Illinois is Making Moves
For years the State of Illinois forbade shipping beer, wine, and other spirits to buyers in Illinois from businesses that are located outside of the State’s boundaries.
However, after years of battling back and much deliberation, US Circuit Judge Diane Wood labeled the shipping ban as discriminatory and protectionist, opening a new path for Illinois wine-drinkers and oenophiles to enjoy the benefits of wine clubs.
According to Tom Wark, the Executive Director of National Association of Wine Retailers (NAWR), the law protects “the middleman wholesaler to the Illinois retailer“ from competition.
Another powerful ally in the fight has been Indiana wine retailer Lebamoff Enterprises. The retailer claims that the Illinois shipping ban is a violation of the Commerce Clause.
The enterprise filed a lawsuit claiming that the law defies the 21st amendment adopted after the end of Prohibition in 1933. Lebamoff has gone on the record stating that these State laws are ‘unfairly protectionist’.
Most wine connoisseurs agree with NAWR because the regulation indirectly restricts the freedom of Illinois residents from choosing their wines. Now, apart from exploring the benefits of the ban being lifted, discover five wine clubs opening their doors to shipping to Illinois wine aficionados.
What is Senate Bill 3830?
SB3830 is an amendment of the Liquor Control Act of 1934. It was filed by Senator Sara Feigenholtz of Chicago’s 6th District on February 14th, 2020. It contests the anti-consumer ban on Illinois customers that prevents them from receiving wine shipments from out-of-state retailers or wine clubs.
The irony is that Illinois permits shipments originating from in-state wineries, wine retailers, and even wineries from out of the State while barring out-of-state wine retailers.
The best bit about the bill is that it aims to establish fair licensing fees and eligibility criteria for licensees. It also proposes provisions in taxation, reporting, and recordkeeping apart from working with third-party providers.
What Are The Benefits This Ban On Wine Shipping Being Lifted?
There are many perks to be felt by consumers as the State adopts the new bill and removes the current ban on wine shipping. For starters, it will open up a greater selection of available wines for consumers. Wines from exotic varieties and terroirs delivered will now be eligible for direct shipping to consumers.
The three major benefits the wine shipping ban removal in Illinois are elaborated upon further below.
Tax Revenue Growth
By amending the licensing terms for out-of-state wine retailers, the State of Illinois can increase its total tax revenue. From his own calculations, Tom Wark has forecast that the State could earn around $5 to $6 million in additional sales tax revenue simply by removing this ban.
Reduced Litigation Costs
If the State were to adopt SB3830, it would mean the costs involved with the lawsuit filed by Cap n’ Cork or Lebamoff Enterprises will summarily disappear. It also means avoiding the price of legal procedures against the constitutionality of the ban.
Freedom For Retailers and Customers
By adopting the new bill, wine clubs can offer better delivery experiences for Illinois customers like everyone else. On top of it, Illinois consumers will gain the ‘right to choose’ their wines.
Best 5 Wine Clubs That Ship to Illinois
Even though the Illinois ban has not yet been removed, you can pick a wine club that is licensed to send liquor to Illinois addresses. For wine-enthusiasts from this state, pick from the selections offered by some of the best wine club operators.
The California Wine Club
An online wine club with 30 years of experience, The California Wine Club is famous for its artisanal wines from California and around the world. Subscribers can choose from six membership plans with prices ranging from $40.95 to $231 exclusive of shipping.
Backed by the Wall Street Journal, WSJwine is known for sourcing its wines directly from winemakers and vineyards located around the world. Illinois wine lovers can select their wine shipments on WSJ from two membership plans. Discovery and Premier Wine Club options are priced at $69.99 and $259.99 every three months, respectively.
A one-of-a-kind wine club made by wine lovers for wine lovers, Naked Wines connects wine buyers with winemakers. Wine drinkers can sign up for this Wine Club for $40 per month or more, based on wine selections. Subscribers are called Angels with their payments funding the winemaking journeys directly.
Gold Medal Wine Club
A legendary wine club with over 25 years of experience, Gold Medal Wine Club (GMWC) is sought after for its award-winning wines. There are six membership options with prices ranging from $39 to $188 for two bottles per delivery on GMWC. Customers from Illinois can pick their wines based on varietals, wine regions and ratings here.
Winc Wine Club
This is a contemporary wine club that resembles a winery. The Winc Wine Club is popular for its unique algorithm that helps customers find wines based on their palate preferences. The best attraction for Illinois residents is they can customize the total number of bottles per shipment. With prices starting at $13 per bottle, this can cost $52 to $59 for a shipment of three to four bottles.
Wine retailers and judges agree that the Illinois ban on wine shipping is anticompetitive and unjust. If Senate Bill 3830 is passed, oenophiles in Illinois will get doorstep delivery of their favorite wines from anywhere in the world.
For those already interested in exploring available doorstep shipping options, pick from one of the above five Wine Clubs to begin a fresh journey into the world of wine.