If you’re going on a Holland America cruise, you might be interested to know about the wines you can drink onboard.
There are different drinks packages on Holland America that you can buy.
We’re more into drinking wine than cocktails or hard liquor.
So on our recent HAL cruise on the Rotterdam, we bought one of the Holland America Sommelier Suite packages. These wine packages bundle wines by the bottle.
HAL says they can save you up to 25% off the price of a bottle.
(All prices shown below are in U.S. dollars.)
Holland America wine packages
You can choose from three Sommelier Suite wine packages on Holland America cruise ships.
All bottles have to be picked from the same Cellar in the package. (Or the next Cellar down. So if you have bought Cellar No. 2, you can also pick a wine from Cellar No. 1).
If you don’t finish all the wines you buy, you can take any unopened wine bottles home with you.
Many of the Cellar wines are not found on the wine list in the main dining room (the James Suckling JS90+ Wine List, covered below) or wine menus in the specialty restaurants.
1) Cellar No. 1:
This package contains what’s referred to as “popularly priced wines”:
- 4 bottles = $119
- 6 bottles = $169
- 8 bottles = $219
2) Cellar No. 2:
This HAL wine package features premium wines:
- 4 bottles = $149
- 6 bottles = $229
- 8 bottles = $289
We chose the Cellar No. 2 wine package on our most recent Rotterdam cruise.
We’re serious fans of the Meiomi. Part of the reason for indulging in this HAL wine package was to drink the Meiomi.
As it turned out, the Meiomi Pinot Noir wasn’t available one night. We were offered a Robert Mondavi Pinot Noir instead as an alternative.
Actually, some other wines in the Sommelier Suite list also weren’t available.
But we were offered good substitutes (for example, an interesting dry Gewurztraminer instead of the Ruffino Pino Grigio from Italy).
3) Cellar No. 3:
The third and most expensive of Holland America’s Sommelier Suite packages bundles some wine aficionado favorites:
- 4 bottles = $189
- 6 bottles = $269
- 8 bottles = $329
Holland America wines by the glass
You can also buy wines by the glass.
Or, if you have one of HAL’s alcohol packages, you can choose wines by the glass.
The Holland America Signature beverage package, for example, allows you up to 15 alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks a day. In this package, you can choose wines up to $11 a glass.
If you have the Elite beverage package, you can choose wines by the glass that cost up to $15 each.
In both cases, if you pick a pricier wine by the glass, you just have to pay the difference.
Some of the wines by the glass are also highly ranked by James Suckling (see below).
Holland America white wines by the glass:
Holland America red wines by the glass:
Holland America wine list
HAL’s wine list has been chosen by James Suckling.
A former senior editor and European Bureau Chief at Wine Spectator, he’s one of the world’s top wine critics.
All the wines on this list have consistently scored 90 points or above (on his 100-points scale) in recent vintages. A score of 90 to 94 is “outstanding” and a score of 95 to 100 is “truly great.”
You’ll find a great selection – more than 100 wines by the bottle – from France, California, Washington state, Italy, Spain, Chile, New Zealand and other places around the world.
Holland America white wines by the bottle
HAL’s prices for bottles of white wine range from $36 to $125 (for the Cakebread Chardonnay Reserve, Napa Valley).
Most whites are in the $40 to $50 range.
Holland America red wines by the bottle
The Holland America wine list prices for bottles of red range from $40 to a high of $284 (for the Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington state’s Columbia Valley).
Red wines outnumber whites on the wine menu – most are priced between $40 and $70.
Here are the red wines by the bottle, continuing from Page 9 of HAL’s wine list. (The Pinot Noirs are shown in the above image after the white wines.)
James’s “Rock Star” wines
These are the best wines on James Suckling’s list – described as “some of the best in the world.”
Of course, they’re more pricey!
The Opus One from Napa (which we’ve tried before – scrumptious!) goes for $369. The most expensive wine is Penfolds Grange from South Australia – for an eye-popping cost of $789.
The wine menu has two pages of Rock Star wines.
Can you bring wine on a Holland America cruise?
Yes, you can bring wine onboard. But you’ll have to pay to do so.
The Holland America wine policy was changed in 2021. You’re no longer able to bring a free bottle of wine onboard. For each bottle of wine you bring, you’ll be charged a $20 corkage fee.
However, this policy doesn’t apply to wine you buy on a wine-focused shore excursion organized by Holland America. In this case, you may bring one bottle back to the ship without having to pay the corkage fee on it.