Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

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Bill Lewis
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#1 Post by Bill Lewis » April 26th, 2013, 12:10 pm

About 2 weeks ago, I bought 2 bottles of 2012 Mouton from K&L on futures. I happened to read an article yesterday about how Mouton lowered their price this year, and went back and did a search on wine-searcher.com. At least 7 other places had a cheaper price (at the time of purchase, no one was offering on wine-searcher), several by $20-40/bottle.

In any case, I went to online chat yesterday, looking to see if they would price match. No one ever answered, and so I tried to send it to them (using their system) so they could read it and respond when non one was available. I did not receive a response, and so below is my chat session - the operator cut me off mid-typing. In any case, you'll see her comments (highlighted if I did it correctly) as to Grand Cru and their futures. I was wondering if any of you know what she's talking about, or if you've had any issues with them:

Bill:
Need help with futures purchase.

Call accepted by operator Melissa Smith. Currently in room: Melissa Smith, Bill.

Melissa Smith:
How can I help?
Bill:
I had tried this yesterday, but no one responded online. I thought I sent the request, but did not receive an answer. In any case, here is my issue:
Bill:
I recently placed order # ____________ with you, and was a bit disappointed to find that literally everyone else is selling the same bottles for $30-40 cheaper. I am hoping you might be willing to price match. I can give you links if that's helpful.
Melissa Smith:
Ah, unfortunately we are unable to price match, however our reputation exceeds all other online companies that deal in futures.
Melissa Smith:
Is there anything else that I can help you with?
Bill:
Well, I appreciate that, but I have purchased from you and from others who are priced less and have had no issues. I'd like to ask you to reconsider, as I'm not sure the reputation is equivalent to the charge.
Melissa Smith:
I'm sorry, the only company I see offering it in the US for less than us is Premier Cru, and we are not willing to do what they do in order to make a sale.
Bill:
I'm not sure what you mean by "we are not willing to do what they do in order to make a sale," but here's a link showing multiple companies that are less: http://www.wine-searcher.com/find/mouto ... d/2012/usa
Melissa Smith:
I am on that site right now, I've heard of none of the other companies besides Wally's and JJ Buckleys.
Bill:
Well, I'm not sure what to tell you. I've worked with both of them, Grand Vin, Zachy's, etc. Candidly, looking at this today, it appears that prices have started to go up because when I tried to get help yesterday, Grand Vine was at $349. I don't recall where Wally's or JJ Buckley was, and I dodn't even reva;; seeing Zachy's yesterday.
Bill:
recall
Melissa Smith:
I can appreciate you wanting the best price, but we stand by our reputation and our prices.
Bill:
Well, at $80 for 2 bottles, I don't value your reputation as highly as you do. Frankly, as a consumer, my value of your reputation is paramount. If this had been a 2 month old order, or less recent offering, I could appreciate your position. Unfortunately, though, I will have to take my business elsehwre in the future. FWIW, I spend ~$____ a year on wine, and have only started buying from you in any significance recently. To my recollection, I have never purchased futures from you, so I don't even know if your "reputation" is deserved from that perspective.
Melissa Smith:
I see that you purchased the 2009 Lagrange, and 2010 Langoa Barton from us.
Melissa Smith:
I wish you all the best, we will notify you as soon as your bottles arrive.

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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#2 Post by Craig G » April 26th, 2013, 7:13 pm

Just ask them for a refund. I have never had a problem with it. K&L rarely has the best prices but it is worth something for their service and reliability. There is no surprise in what you posted - I would not expect them to price match.
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Chuck Miller
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#3 Post by Chuck Miller » April 26th, 2013, 7:50 pm

Exactly. If it's a futures order and you haven't accepted delivery, cancel the order (assuming no cancellation/restocking fees) and place the order with a lower cost supplier.
Last edited by Chuck Miller on April 26th, 2013, 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Daniel H
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#4 Post by Daniel H » April 26th, 2013, 9:00 pm

Whay are you buying 2012 futures? Because I can't imagine anyone running out of the 750mls any time soon...
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Robert.Fleming
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#5 Post by Robert.Fleming » April 27th, 2013, 10:06 am

Bill,

Next time the price goes up after you purchase futures, are you going to call and insist on paying more?

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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#6 Post by Bruce Leiser_owitz » April 28th, 2013, 11:53 am

Bill Lewis wrote:About 2 weeks ago, I bought 2 bottles of 2012 Mouton from K&L on futures. I happened to read an article yesterday about how Mouton lowered their price this year, and went back and did a search on wine-searcher.com. At least 7 other places had a cheaper price (at the time of purchase, no one was offering on wine-searcher), several by $20-40/bottle.
Different retailers get wines like this on futures at different prices, depending on their sources for the wines. Even when a wine like 2012 Mouton is finally released, wine-searcher prices will vary as well.

The time to do comparison shopping is before you make a purchase. In my view, it's somewhat unreasonable to expect a retailer to cut you a deal AFTER you've made the purchase, especially when you've only bought two (2) bottles of something.

Bruce
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#7 Post by John S » April 28th, 2013, 12:23 pm

I may sound harsh, you did (or should have) done research at the time and agreed to pay a price for goods. Now you have buyers remorse. I can think of over a hundred times I have agreed to purchase wine from a retailer and later (minutes, hours, days, week, years) found it cheaper. I don't think it is appropriate to back out of a deal. But you are welcome to ask for a refund at whatever terms you can. FWIW, I would actually pay higher prices for futures at K&L versus some other stores. Easily!
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#8 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » May 3rd, 2013, 4:06 am

Asking for the price match was, I guess, harmless. However, the conversation should have been over when the answer was "No."
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#9 Post by Joel W » May 3rd, 2013, 3:22 pm

Bill Lewis wrote:FWIW, I spend ~$____ a year on wine, and have only started buying from you in any significance recently.
This reminds me of the old celebrity line "Don't you know who I am?"

Bottom line, you have buyers remorse and want to beat them up until they see it your way. I disagree.

By the way, you probably would've got more sympathy (or a little) if you hadn't had posted this in the Wine Pimps forum.
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#10 Post by Mark Y » May 3rd, 2013, 3:36 pm

Robert.Fleming wrote:Bill,

Next time the price goes up after you purchase futures, are you going to call and insist on paying more?
+1
unless they have a stated "price guarantee for X number of days".. pricing is fluid.. it went down..
no harm in asking, but the tone leaves much to be desired..
Y.e.

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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#11 Post by Tyler Rico » May 3rd, 2013, 3:41 pm

gmafb

they're supposed to do the work for you and price match once you realize other retailers have lower prices?

do your research before you buy, you have no one to blame but yourself

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Leonard Maran
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#12 Post by Leonard Maran » June 15th, 2013, 12:28 pm

Just want to add (and i have no affiliation) that K&L is remarkable in every way. I've never had any issues with them.

RS Beck
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#13 Post by RS Beck » June 16th, 2013, 8:31 am

Usually, if you ask for a refund, they'll agree to give 100% refund, but only if you take it in store credit.

I'm not sure why you threatened to boycott them in the future if they failed to price match for you post-purchase. I'm not aware of any retailer who will price match post-purchase, so if that is your criteria for boycott, and you boycott all retailers who don't price match post-purchase, you may find it difficult to find a retailer who meets your criteria.
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#14 Post by CWun » June 18th, 2013, 12:16 pm

Also, a phone call may be easier to do these type of discussions.......
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#15 Post by k s h i n » June 19th, 2013, 2:04 pm

I also have enjoyed my dealings with K&L. Buying futures is not that different from buying stocks, once the deal is done, it is done. I would not have stated I spend $XXX.
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#16 Post by M A T T H A R T L E Y » June 21st, 2013, 3:47 am

Why are you even posting this?

Just cancel the order and move on...
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#17 Post by BobH » June 25th, 2013, 3:13 pm

You ordered your wine, and you have it promised. If the price went down, that is the risk you take when ordering futures. K&L is under no obligation to give you a lower price.
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Nick Ryan
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#18 Post by Nick Ryan » June 28th, 2013, 5:32 pm

What everyone else said. Of all wine retailers in existence, K&L is the least deserving of getting slammed.
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#19 Post by Joe B » June 28th, 2013, 5:35 pm

I don't like the price I paid for aapl

I want to buy at today's price.
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#20 Post by Peter Petersen » June 29th, 2013, 8:37 am

K&L rarely have the best prices, although Wally's and Twenty-Twenty are worse. But it is a first class operation. They always deliver and their auctions are pretty cool as well.

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#21 Post by D@v!d P@rt@!n » July 14th, 2013, 7:14 pm

A couple of years ago I ordered a few bottles of Marquis Murietta Ygay Gran Riserva from K&L. The next day Wine Exchange sent an offer at $10 less per bottle. I called K&L and they honored Winex's price adding that they cannot always price match, but in this case they could. I think their shipping can be somewhat complicated if in a time crunch, given several geographically separated locations with different inventory. Beyond that I've had nothing but great service at K&L. [cheers.gif]
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Bill Lewis
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#22 Post by Bill Lewis » November 14th, 2013, 4:35 pm

Wow, never checked this thread until yesterday. A lot of judgment here. As I re-read my text, perhaps some is deserved, but no one actually answered my question - whether anyone has experienced any issues with Grand Cru. I took K&L's response to mean that there was something wrong with Grand Cru.

FWIW Later that day, I called and spoke with the K&L manager. He was very kind and agreed to cancel my order. I have since made other purchases at K&L and hold no grudge against them.

As for price checking, I did same before purchasing. When I bought from K&L, they were one of only 2 offering it, and they were the cheapest. 2 weeks later, after there was the announcement that the 2012 vintage was not selling well, they were one of the highest. I had previously tried reaching K&L several different ways, and they didn't respond to me at all. Given they had no product to ship to me at that time, and had likely incurred no cost in "reserving" 2 bottles for me, I felt it was ok to ask for a price match. I found the salesperson to be rude, but re-reading my own writing, she probably read my responses that way as well.

Not that this has any bearing on K&L, but I am especially leery of buying futures from companies with whom I've not done any real business. About a decade ago, when I purchased several cases of wine on futures at Zachy's, and they didn't deliver 1/2 of it; and, despite e-mails and calls to managers, I only received the answer that they "did not have my wine," and would refund the money they had been holding for ~ 2 years as my sole remedy. After I threatened to go buy it on the open market for the 50% increase and charge them for the difference, the wine magically was shipped to me 2 days later (apparently they did have it). Futures receipts and websites often state that the merchant has no liability if they can't deliver the wines on futures.

Additionally, I was unsure whether K&L was all that reputable. Given that they were bashing a competitor, and given further my prior experience (with Zachy's) and what I considered to be the customer service rep's attitude (in addition to their complete failure to get back to my ims and emails), I came here.

While quite a few people did offer unsolicited, but constructive, suggestions to my situation (cancel the order), and others let me know that K&L was, in fact, a legitimate company, the rest seemed bent on judging me. So be it, but I'm not sure what you intended to accomplish other than making yourself feel better somehow, and me worse. In any case, thanks to those of you who tried to help/have constructive advice.

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#23 Post by Robert.Fleming » November 14th, 2013, 5:03 pm

Bill Lewis wrote:Wow, never checked this thread until yesterday.
Posted April 26, checked on responses November 14.

Wow.

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#24 Post by Bill Lewis » November 14th, 2013, 5:06 pm

Yep, completely forgot about the post, not to mention the fact that posting online is not an avocation of mine.

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#25 Post by Nick Ryan » November 14th, 2013, 6:10 pm

Bill Lewis wrote:Yep, completely forgot about the post, not to mention the fact that posting online is not an avocation of mine.
Then maybe in the future you should refrain from making drive-by posts on popular message boards slamming companies if you have no intention of participating in the storm you created.
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#26 Post by Bill Lewis » November 14th, 2013, 6:28 pm

Maybe you should stop being so judgmental. I meant to check in shortly thereafter, but you have no idea what my life circumstances were since then. This is a wine board for giving and receiving (theoretically) useful information. It's not where I chose to spend the greater part of my life. Even if I had checked in, it wouldn't change the fact that unhelpful venting abounded in the responses.

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#27 Post by Nick Ryan » November 14th, 2013, 6:56 pm

Bill, stop digging. That is all. Good luck with your future message board endeavors.
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#28 Post by RS Beck » November 14th, 2013, 8:35 pm

I don't read the k&l saleswoman's comments as the least bit rude. She simply stood her ground. I also don't see where she slammed a competitor. I read that she hadn't heard of some of them and wasn't willing to do what others do in order to make a sale, which is her perogative.

On the other hand, I read your comment that you don't value k&l's reputation as much as the salesperson does as needlessly argumentative.

She said what she was and wasn't willing to do and why.

You simply received an answer you didn't like.

The fact that you didn't like it doesn't make it rude.

Finally, your trying to assert your authority based on your being the customer was also unfounded. Being a customer doesn't entitle you to set policies or prices for a company.

Being a customer entitles you to shop around before you purchase.

You had already exhausted your prerogatives.

Only polite option you had was to kindly ask for a refund, but here you are asking about Premier Cru and I can tell you they don't give refunds after a purchase.

Basically, she told you she felt K&L was entitled to a premium because they have a good reputation, which they do. I see nothing rude in that. I just see it as inconvenient for you.
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#29 Post by Craig G » November 14th, 2013, 11:41 pm

Bill, I think you mean Premier Cru. You can do a search on this site and you will find plenty of threads with strong opinions one way or the other on them. The short answer is that they have great prices but often very long delivery times. Most people seem to agree that you eventually get your wine (there are some exceptions which usually result in store credit). That is my experience, though in some cases it was quite frustrating calling every few months for literally years and being told that the wine would be there in a few months. Some people worry about the condition of the wines (as in "where were they stored during all that time?") but personally I've never had a problem with it. In terms of reputation I would say they are on the shady end of reliable range.

K&L is pretty much at the top end of the reliable scale with customer service to match. I went in there this month having bought six bottles of a cheap Bourgogne and the guy who brought it out of storage said, "you're going to drink one bottle of this and bring it back" and talked me out of taking it. Another time one of their people found some evidence of leakage/spillage on a bottle of 2009 Bordeaux and suggested I not to take any of the bottles from that case (even though we agreed it didn't look like heat damage). He asked me to wait a week until another shipment came in.
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Issues with Grand Cru/Futures? K&L?

#30 Post by M A T T H A R T L E Y » November 15th, 2013, 8:25 am

Here is some helpful advice:
Bill Lewis wrote: FWIW, I spend ~$____ a year on wine, and have only started buying from you in any significance recently.


Never throw this line out there...for any reason.
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