Premier Cru - Berkeley, CA., Wine Retailer - Buyer Beware

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Samuel M.
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#51 Post by Samuel M. » March 24th, 2015, 5:11 pm

I am one of the victim that william mentioned in this post.
I come from Hong Kong and the real story is I spotted premier cru's attractive and competitive pricing on wine-searcher back in 2012 for some of the 2010 bordeaux wine.
I did a very limited research on the internet and though they should be reliable, however my research are not deep enough to see what is really going on in premier cru.
I end up ordered 58 bottles of red with the total sum of USD11,439 from the premier cru, they ask for full payment, I paid them all off in August, 2012. (I still kept all of our e-mail record)

Now I am heading out for work, if guys you need some sort of evidence to prove my story, I am happy to submit my invoice and e-mail record.

They simply just keep telling me the shipment is gonna hit the water like in 2 months, and when you ask for more details, they will go I am not sure or they go silence.

Now these days they don't even border to reply any of my e-mail.

My sales representative use to be James Gillerman, Premier Cru claimed he retired and now they sent me Sunita Aggarwal.
Samuel Mok

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#52 Post by William Gladstone » March 24th, 2015, 5:24 pm

Samuel M. wrote:I am one of the victim that william mentioned in this post.
I come from Hong Kong and the real story is I spotted premier cru's attractive and competitive pricing on wine-searcher back in 2012 for some of the 2010 bordeaux wine.
I did a very limited research on the internet and though they should be reliable, however my research are not deep enough to see what is really going on in premier cru.
I end up ordered 58 bottles of red with the total sum of USD11,439 from the premier cru, they ask for full payment, I paid them all off in August, 2012. (I still kept all of our e-mail record)

Now I am heading out for work, if guys you need some sort of evidence to prove my story, I am happy to submit my invoice and e-mail record.

They simply just keep telling me the shipment is gonna hit the water like in 2 months, and when you ask for more details, they will go I am not sure or they go silence.

Now these days they don't even border to reply any of my e-mail.

My sales representative use to be James Gillerman, Premier Cru claimed he retired and now they sent me Sunita Aggarwal.
Hi Samuel
I hope you are prepared to be attacked, rather than helped.
Do not take it personally. Realize that the attacks have nothing to do with you or the mean spirited comments will eat you up.
Best of luck, keep me up to date on your progress.
Wg

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Bill Tex Landreth
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#53 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » March 24th, 2015, 5:47 pm

Samuel M. wrote:I am one of the victim that william mentioned in this post.
I come from Hong Kong and the real story is I spotted premier cru's attractive and competitive pricing on wine-searcher back in 2012 for some of the 2010 bordeaux wine.
I did a very limited research on the internet and though they should be reliable, however my research are not deep enough to see what is really going on in premier cru.
I end up ordered 58 bottles of red with the total sum of USD11,439 from the premier cru, they ask for full payment, I paid them all off in August, 2012. (I still kept all of our e-mail record)

Now I am heading out for work, if guys you need some sort of evidence to prove my story, I am happy to submit my invoice and e-mail record.

They simply just keep telling me the shipment is gonna hit the water like in 2 months, and when you ask for more details, they will go I am not sure or they go silence.

Now these days they don't even border to reply any of my e-mail.

My sales representative use to be James Gillerman, Premier Cru claimed he retired and now they sent me Sunita Aggarwal.
REAL NAMES
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#54 Post by M A T T H A R T L E Y » March 24th, 2015, 6:44 pm

This has to be in the running for thread of the year...

Please put in wine talk!
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Bill Tex Landreth
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#55 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » March 24th, 2015, 6:49 pm

No matter that the mods deleted my thread. Representative authority bodies have been contacted.
I am sure that he has proper licensure, but just to make sure he can solicit from private sellers (cellars)...

http://www.honolulu.gov/liq/contactus.html
It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would be doing it if it were easy.

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#56 Post by Peter Kleban » March 24th, 2015, 7:15 pm

Peter Hirsch wrote:
Poppy Davis wrote:No soup for you! :) :o
Very, very, very funny!!!
A perfect response. Perfect
I think Poppy has some experience in dealing with infants [cheers.gif] :-)
Bob Wood:
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#57 Post by ericskitei » March 24th, 2015, 9:08 pm

[popcorn.gif]

Samuel M.
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#58 Post by Samuel M. » March 24th, 2015, 10:33 pm

David K o l i n wrote:Never had a problem with PC. I will never buy from you, though. Il ow you dont are because I'm not Asian. What does Hong Kong Yelp say?
Are you being racist?
Samuel Mok

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#59 Post by Samuel M. » March 24th, 2015, 10:41 pm

David K o l i n wrote:
William Gladstone wrote:Well that is really good to know,
Maybe you can help your client, Samuel Mok, of Hong Kong?
If you cannot find the numerous cases due to him that he has been so upset trying to get from 2010 vintage, I can give you his direct email details. And he has sent me the invoices as well so i can forward those to you.

I imagine that you can find his contact information.
he has been emailing me for help for a while and I finally gave him some suggestions.

I will tell him to reach out to you if you send me your contact details? Phone and email, I have nothing to do with this except just trying to be of help.
You can write to me directly
william@williamgladstoneimports.com

I'm so pleased you want to help resolve this.
Has Samuel called PC?
Yes, I did twice, first time by my gf who were still in US in December 2014 her name is Annette, James answered and said wines will be arriving in spring 2015. I send them email to confirm about the date, no reply. I personally called early February 2015, sunita said James had retired now she is handling my order, I asked again about the arrival time. She said the shipment will hit the water late April, and again I email her to confirm things we said in the tele conversation. She replied as can't be sure where are they getting my wines and just ask me to wait.
Samuel Mok

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#60 Post by Samuel M. » March 24th, 2015, 10:49 pm

M A T T H A R T L E Y wrote:This has to be in the running for thread of the year...

Please put in wine talk!
because those are not your 11k USD? I though Americans are kind, friendly and helpful
Samuel Mok

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#61 Post by JohnWoo » March 24th, 2015, 11:11 pm

Samuel M. wrote:
M A T T H A R T L E Y wrote:This has to be in the running for thread of the year...

Please put in wine talk!
because those are not your 11k USD? I though Americans are kind, friendly and helpful
Will PC just give you a refund?
Not ITB!

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#62 Post by RS Beck » March 24th, 2015, 11:13 pm

" I thought Americans are kind, friendly and helpful"

That's just a hurtful positive stereotype. :-)
Rob

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#63 Post by Samuel M. » March 25th, 2015, 1:15 am

JohnWoo wrote:
Samuel M. wrote:
M A T T H A R T L E Y wrote:This has to be in the running for thread of the year...

Please put in wine talk!
because those are not your 11k USD? I though Americans are kind, friendly and helpful
Will PC just give you a refund?
I asked for a charge back, then they said we can send you a cheque back and also offer send me 2 cases of wine in the next months.
However when I ask for more details by email, they ignore my email again.
Now they dont even bother to reply my e-mail.
Samuel Mok

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#64 Post by Samuel M. » March 25th, 2015, 1:18 am

RS Beck wrote:" I thought Americans are kind, friendly and helpful"

That's just a hurtful positive stereotype. :-)
Don't say that I did meet some very friendly and helpful American, but unfortunately not everyone are like this...... pileon
Samuel Mok

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Bill Tex Landreth
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#65 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » March 25th, 2015, 5:50 am

Sam, real names.

Reported to mods.
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#66 Post by Peter Hirsch » March 25th, 2015, 6:26 am

Sam.
Here's your timeline
2012 you order some 2010 from PC at prices that are 'attractive' and I think you would have to agree that they were more than 'competitive' as if they we just 'competitive' you'd have stayed with your existing retailers.

You know the length of time PC takes to deliver and you made the choice to trade a longer time line for better pricing (a simple Google search would have shown this).

You made payment in Aug 2012.

The earliest you could have expected delivery for these wines would have been in the Fall of 2013 but really in the Spring of 2014. But knowing that PC takes longer, really the Spring of 2015 is the earliest that you really could have expected delivery.

Your GF asks about delivery in December 2014 and is told that the Spring of 2015 is the target.

Spring came yesterday? 2 days ago?

In the annals of people claiming non-delivery from Premier Cru, I'd say you're one of the fastest to claim 'foul'. I think you need to give this another year, see if they deliver by the Spring of 2016 before you really have a claim here.

Again, you willingly and (I assume) knowingly traded off speed of delivery for better price. And if you didn't choose to make a google search to understand why the price was so good, I can't believe that this is PC's fault.

I'm sorry if this is not "helpful", but it's meant in both a "kind and friendly" way I hope...

And I do worry for you that your 'friend' WG is fanning the flames of your discontent.

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#67 Post by Dan.Gord0n » March 25th, 2015, 7:47 am

Samuel M. wrote:
JohnWoo wrote:
Will PC just give you a refund?
I asked for a charge back, then they said we can send you a cheque back and also offer send me 2 cases of wine in the next months.
However when I ask for more details by email, they ignore my email again.
Now they dont even bother to reply my e-mail.
How do you feel about what they proposed? Either your money back or wait a couple more months? Seems like they gave you an out if you want to take it instead of waiting. Obviously getting your money back doesn't get you the wine given the far below market price that you likely paid originally but at least you have the choice to unwind the purchase and walk away if you don't want to wait. Doesn't make it less frustrating because expectations were not met but at least you can then decide.

As an FYI, though I found James very good about responding to emails, overall from many comments on WB board, I don't think that PC is good about responding by email to general inquiries. You may want to give them a call this week and talk to them directly - from what I was just told by PC when I called yesterday (after they hadn't responded to prior email), they are expecting a big shipment to arrive at the beginning of April and another at the beginning of May and it seemed like they know specifically what is in those shipments and can tell you if any of your wine will by arriving by May. At least in my case, it didn't seem like the open 09/10 Bordeaux that I ordered will be coming in by May but rather later in the year.

I have also found them to be pretty good about estimating arrival based on what is either on the water or being readied for containers in Europe (though don't have that info at their finger tips but can do some leg work and figure it out) - in past experience they have good visibility out about 3-4 months as a result and when I've been told that something is within that time frame, almost always they have been correct. I was happy to hear that some orders that I placed in 2009 and 2010 (as well as some other more recent orders) will be arriving in April/May - I certainly feel your frustration and was disappointed that these have taken so long - may seem strange to say but I haven't even begun to get excited or particularly worried about orders placed in Summer of 2012 or later - I'll start to worry about the 2012 orders that haven't arrived about 12 months or so from now. Though past performance is not a guarantee of future results as the saying goes, over a number of years of dealing with delays on some orders (not all orders as for instance I received some 09/10 Bordeaux and other 2010s and 2011s last year), there are some wines that inexplicably take a very long time to arrive - they just do but then they show up all of a sudden - it is crazy and doesn't make sense on so many levels but as Peter mentions, it is always an unknown with them and what you need to put up with in order to buy the wines are below (and sometimes well below) market prices.

As another comment, they did tell me that because of the dock strike they have been set back considerably and that these soon to be arriving containers were delayed and that other wine that would have arrived in the last handful of months has been delayed until later this year. Reading between the lines of what I was told, it seemed that they are expecting large quantities by the fall. Easy for them to say and the proof will be in the arrival but it is not hard to imagine that the port trouble going back to last fall or summer would have created a lot of issues for them particularly because they are slow even without shipping issues.

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#68 Post by RS Beck » March 25th, 2015, 1:17 pm

It seems to me the purpose of this thread is to warn Berserkers of the dangers of working with Premier Cru.

The warning has been issued.

The response has been to question both the intention behind and the need for a new thread regarding Premier Cru.

I think these are fair issues to raise.

The OP operates a business selling wine. May be a different business model, but in general terms, everyone who is in the business of selling wine is a competitor.

OP feels his business is in such indirect competition, he feels comfortable raising the issues he has raised. This explanation seems to have satisfied some and others are not impressed.

OP is not the one who has been directly affected, he's issuing his warning based on entering the fray after purchase was made, disapproves of PC's protocol, but his warning goes beyond simple and personal disapproval.

Alleged victim appears making first post to Berserkers, fails to supply real name, also disapproves of PC's protocol and alleges poor customer service. However, we've only heard one side of the story and most of us have seen this before. Has a possible issue with poor customer service, hard to prove on an internet discussion site.

It's been pointed out that many people on Berserkers have had the same general experience reported by both posters, but eventually received the wine ordered or were refunded or compensated fairly.

So, warning has been issued, OP learned about other threads already ongoing regarding PC, issues have been raised.

No blood has been shed and no animals were harmed in the making of this thread.

When you're finished, please put your coffee cups in the dishwasher, turn out the lights, and lock the doors on your way out. :-)
Rob

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William Gladstone
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#69 Post by William Gladstone » March 25th, 2015, 1:35 pm

Well framed,
Topic has been thoroughly rehashed and has come to a natural end.
Let's move on.

I heard that Tex is inviting everyone to a gigantic Texas BBQ,

Thanks for all of the valuable insights.

May the Saints Bless your souls - Easter is just around the corner, you've done good work men.

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#70 Post by M A T T H A R T L E Y » March 25th, 2015, 2:00 pm

William Gladstone wrote:Well framed,
Topic has been thoroughly rehashed and has come to a natural end.
Let's move on.

I heard that Tex is inviting everyone to a gigantic Texas BBQ,

Thanks for all of the valuable insights.

May the Saints Bless your souls - Easter is just around the corner, you've done good work men.
Ummm...did I miss something or did you accuse, in writing, a business of committing fraud a few posts back?

Now you say "let's move on..."

Is that some sort of a drive by with a bazooka?
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#71 Post by Peter Kleban » March 25th, 2015, 2:13 pm

M A T T H A R T L E Y wrote:
William Gladstone wrote:Well framed,
Topic has been thoroughly rehashed and has come to a natural end.
Let's move on.

I heard that Tex is inviting everyone to a gigantic Texas BBQ,

Thanks for all of the valuable insights.

May the Saints Bless your souls - Easter is just around the corner, you've done good work men.
Ummm...did I miss something or did you accuse, in writing, a business of committing fraud a few posts back?

Now you say "let's move on..."

Is that some sort of a drive by with a bazooka?
Sounds about right.
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Simon Bize Savigny-lès-Beaune Les Bourgeots '14
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W Schaefer Gr. Hreich Ausl #4 '15
G Marsella Fiano di Avellino '15
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#72 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » March 25th, 2015, 2:21 pm

Always a big beef fest at my house. BBQ is not an event.
It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would be doing it if it were easy.

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#73 Post by William Gladstone » March 25th, 2015, 2:38 pm

Not at all
we will resume this discussion at Tex's BBQ,

Insha'Allah

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#74 Post by Samuel M. » March 25th, 2015, 5:17 pm

Peter Hirsch wrote:Sam.
Here's your timeline
2012 you order some 2010 from PC at prices that are 'attractive' and I think you would have to agree that they were more than 'competitive' as if they we just 'competitive' you'd have stayed with your existing retailers.

You know the length of time PC takes to deliver and you made the choice to trade a longer time line for better pricing (a simple Google search would have shown this).

You made payment in Aug 2012.

The earliest you could have expected delivery for these wines would have been in the Fall of 2013 but really in the Spring of 2014. But knowing that PC takes longer, really the Spring of 2015 is the earliest that you really could have expected delivery.

Your GF asks about delivery in December 2014 and is told that the Spring of 2015 is the target.

Spring came yesterday? 2 days ago?

In the annals of people claiming non-delivery from Premier Cru, I'd say you're one of the fastest to claim 'foul'. I think you need to give this another year, see if they deliver by the Spring of 2016 before you really have a claim here.

Again, you willingly and (I assume) knowingly traded off speed of delivery for better price. And if you didn't choose to make a google search to understand why the price was so good, I can't believe that this is PC's fault.

I'm sorry if this is not "helpful", but it's meant in both a "kind and friendly" way I hope...

And I do worry for you that your 'friend' WG is fanning the flames of your discontent.
PC is not the only winery I bough EP form, instead of just attractive price I also consider about the reliability. Since it is my first time doing business with PC, I choose to diversify my purchase into two different winery PC in the state and BBR in Europe. However have I told you how competitive the pricing it was? 10% 20% off the normal market price? What should I expect if it is just 10% off the market price? Then because I got 10% off the Average Market Price, I should expect to wait 10 years? 20years or more for my 2010 wine? Or may be is the seller's (PC) responsibility to keep their customer inform about their stock or what I should expect from them? If so I couldn't risk my 11K of USD, I would rather pay 10% extra and purchase all my 2010 EP from the BBR.

Additionally December, 2014 is the first time we tried to use telephone to communicate, back in June 2013 I begin tracking down my stock, unfortunately James told me a few ETA date which are never true (such as "look at the winter of 2013, late summer 2014, late Autumn 2014"). Therefore you questioning me about when is spring 2015? two days ago? This is a joke......simply because I can't trust them anymore...... Something you boss keep on telling your you will get your pay slip tomorrow, but then you never get it "tomorrow", after a good few time, would you trust about his work "tomorrow"? And when you ask where is my pay slip, should you expect some one ask you 2a.m.? 3 hours later?

Dude please try to understand my frustration here, show some empathy instead of mocking my horrible purchase experience in the State.

Here I just want to ask for a valid and promising ETA date for my wines, clearly PC failed to do that they keeps mention some date and postpone. That's why I think this sound like a ponzi scheme.
Samuel Mok

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#75 Post by Samuel M. » March 25th, 2015, 5:27 pm

Dan.Gord0n wrote:
Samuel M. wrote:
JohnWoo wrote:
Will PC just give you a refund?
I asked for a charge back, then they said we can send you a cheque back and also offer send me 2 cases of wine in the next months.
However when I ask for more details by email, they ignore my email again.
Now they dont even bother to reply my e-mail.
How do you feel about what they proposed? Either your money back or wait a couple more months? Seems like they gave you an out if you want to take it instead of waiting. Obviously getting your money back doesn't get you the wine given the far below market price that you likely paid originally but at least you have the choice to unwind the purchase and walk away if you don't want to wait. Doesn't make it less frustrating because expectations were not met but at least you can then decide.

As an FYI, though I found James very good about responding to emails, overall from many comments on WB board, I don't think that PC is good about responding by email to general inquiries. You may want to give them a call this week and talk to them directly - from what I was just told by PC when I called yesterday (after they hadn't responded to prior email), they are expecting a big shipment to arrive at the beginning of April and another at the beginning of May and it seemed like they know specifically what is in those shipments and can tell you if any of your wine will by arriving by May. At least in my case, it didn't seem like the open 09/10 Bordeaux that I ordered will be coming in by May but rather later in the year.

I have also found them to be pretty good about estimating arrival based on what is either on the water or being readied for containers in Europe (though don't have that info at their finger tips but can do some leg work and figure it out) - in past experience they have good visibility out about 3-4 months as a result and when I've been told that something is within that time frame, almost always they have been correct. I was happy to hear that some orders that I placed in 2009 and 2010 (as well as some other more recent orders) will be arriving in April/May - I certainly feel your frustration and was disappointed that these have taken so long - may seem strange to say but I haven't even begun to get excited or particularly worried about orders placed in Summer of 2012 or later - I'll start to worry about the 2012 orders that haven't arrived about 12 months or so from now. Though past performance is not a guarantee of future results as the saying goes, over a number of years of dealing with delays on some orders (not all orders as for instance I received some 09/10 Bordeaux and other 2010s and 2011s last year), there are some wines that inexplicably take a very long time to arrive - they just do but then they show up all of a sudden - it is crazy and doesn't make sense on so many levels but as Peter mentions, it is always an unknown with them and what you need to put up with in order to buy the wines are below (and sometimes well below) market prices.

As another comment, they did tell me that because of the dock strike they have been set back considerably and that these soon to be arriving containers were delayed and that other wine that would have arrived in the last handful of months has been delayed until later this year. Reading between the lines of what I was told, it seemed that they are expecting large quantities by the fall. Easy for them to say and the proof will be in the arrival but it is not hard to imagine that the port trouble going back to last fall or summer would have created a lot of issues for them particularly because they are slow even without shipping issues.
Thanks, Dan. Refer to my replied Peter, they gave me two ETA dates which are not real already, I found it hard to trust their word.
Samuel Mok

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#76 Post by Mark Y » March 25th, 2015, 8:06 pm

Samuel, in case you're wondering what all this "real name" stuff is about, you have to put your last name either as your user name, or in your signature..
Msg Todd and he can change your user name.. or go to your profile and you can add to your signature..

we all know it's Mok (based on William's earlier post). but you still have to put it in..
Y.e.

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#77 Post by Thomas Keim » April 5th, 2015, 1:35 pm

How did I miss this?

Nothing like watching someone commit suicide on the board.

There is a long running thread on wine talk about Premier Cru. Can't these guys just get in line like everyone else?

No, I think it would be better to make a complete ass of myself instead pumping out my chest and declaring that people have to wait longer than normal to receive their wines from Premier Cru.

No sh*t Sherlock!
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#78 Post by David Glasser » May 2nd, 2015, 8:50 am

Samuel M. wrote:Dude please try to understand my frustration here, show some empathy instead of mocking my horrible purchase experience in the State.

Here I just want to ask for a valid and promising ETA date for my wines, clearly PC failed to do that they keeps mention some date and postpone. That's why I think this sound like a ponzi scheme.
Sam, if this is your first PC pre-arrival purchase I do understand your frustration. If you read the long PC thread in the main wine talk forum you should feel reassured that you will either get your wine or a refund, but if you want the wine you might have to wait as long as a few more years. As frustrating and unexpected as that is, and I'm sure it's made even more frustrating by repeated missed deadlines and broken promises, you'll get the wine before it reaches optimum drinking age.

Consider this a learning experience. Next time you see a great price from PC, you'll know that a long wait is part of the deal.

Charles Weiss
Posts: 234
Joined: January 27th, 2011, 6:43 pm
Location: Boston

Celebration

#79 Post by Charles Weiss » May 15th, 2015, 1:19 pm

They now ship to Massachusetts and I just received my 2010 Sociando Mallet futures, the first (of not so very many wine shipments over the years) that has been able to come direct to me. Two things to celebrate!

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Daniel H
Posts: 397
Joined: February 3rd, 2010, 9:01 pm

Premier Cru - Berkeley, CA., Wine Retailer - Buyer Beware

#80 Post by Daniel H » May 15th, 2015, 2:34 pm

Leave poor Billy alone, guys. He just wants to help, and has clearly been the recipient of countless requests from Mr Mok and others. Until now, I've always reached out to Jon Rimmerman whenever I had trouble tracking down something precious - be it fine Bordeaux, a hand-made rug, or perhaps some artisanal carp-flavored mustard. But now I know that I can always reach out to Billy on those rare occasions when Jon doesn't come through....
H.e n.n e.s s.e.y

George Chadwick
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3109
Joined: July 7th, 2009, 9:33 pm

Premier Cru - Berkeley, CA., Wine Retailer - Buyer Beware

#81 Post by George Chadwick » June 1st, 2015, 2:42 am

None of this compares to Benchmark calling customers to tell them they have Martians on their lawn.

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