Thrown of the Screaming Eagle list for flipping!

After 15 years or so on the Screaming Eagle list my account was changed to inactive for flipping wines. After reading about the 2nd label I inquired about why I did not receive a offer. They replied they had determined I had previously flipped their wine and was moved to the inactive list. I do understand it is their wine and they can sell or not sell me wine. There were a few years due to their price increase and my financial situation (house repairs,car repairs, etc.) that I could not afford to buy their wines. I did sell them but at cost so I could stay on the list. This brings up a few interesting questions. Are you never allowed to resell their wines? If so when? 2 months, 6 months, 2 years? If you auction your wines are you moved off the list. If other Ca. Producers follow suit what does this mean for the secondary market for mailing list wines if consumers can’t sell their wines. What are the ramifications for auction houses if people can’t sell their mailing list wines for fear of not being able to buy again? It does bring up quite a few questions.


Flip em off.

Steve - it doesn’t sound like you flipped their wines, but merely shared your allocation. To me, that is a big difference.

it means the wines and any price increases are in the hands of people who want to collect and presumably drink the stuff some day. I am told DRC works the same.

It would have been nice for SE to be up-front about this policy, as you could have then made the decision yourself to stay on the list (buy and not flip) or get off the list (either via explicit election or via flipping).

That said, as long as the winery is up-front about such a policy before they enforce it (which SE, here, was not) then I welcome such a policy.


I agree; I think of flipping as re-selling for a hefty profit, not just selling at cost. Steve, you might appeal their decision based on this. If that falls on deaf ears, it means that they don’t care if a proven fan of their wines has a more varied financial picture than simply “always rolling in dough”, so see Blake’s advice.

I agree. They have never stated on their website you can’t resell their wine, but I’m interested in discussing the bigger picture. If more mailing list wineries adopt this policy what does it mean for the secondary market and auction houses? How many people will stop buying allocated wines if they can’t sell all or part of their allocation? This could have a unintended effect and hurt sales if more wineries go down the same road.

Steve – Did you offer them publicly, e.g., in Commerce Corner? I’m curious how they knew you had sold.

I’m not sure – someone who is more up-to-date on antitrust law would have to check me – but if they included a no-resell clause as a condition of the sale, I think that might violate the Sherman Act, because it would be a “contract in restraint of trade.” If they merely punish those who do, there’s no agreement or contract and there is no violation. For example, manufacturers and distributors can, as I recall, refuse to sell to retailers who discount heavily if they feel that undermines their distribution strategy, but they can’t control the retail price via their agreements with the retailer. And ticket agencies and promoters can refuse to sell to those they think will scalp, but they can’t enter a contract with the buyer prohibiting that. Again, this is from fairly distant memory.

Everyone knows Screagle frowns on flipping. I dont buy the wine and I know it. I still think its shitty to dump someone without having it stated on their site, but they can sell to whom they want and as I said, we all know they frown on it.
Im replying for a different reason. Do you really think flipping help sales? That is the most ridiculous thing Ive seen on WB…today :wink: Bumping the after market price might give the winery a little publicity but it keeps away a lot of potential clients who wont pay the premium and by the time the release price catches up with the market price those same buyers who may have become loyal costumers, are out. Happened to me with Harlan, and to a lot of people with Scarecrow. Besides, there are maybe 10 wineries left in California that make consistently flippable wines, maybe less.

Everyone knows Screagle frowns on flipping. I dont buy the wine and I know it. I still think its shitty to dump someone without having it stated on their site, but they can sell to whom they want and as I said, we all know they frown on it.

Sorry, I’ve been on the list for years and didn’t know they frown on it. I did state in my original post that they have a right to sell or not to sell to me. I have no issue with that.

Does this mean you can’t share a allocation? Look at CC corner every time a allocated mailing list goes out. If you could not share your allocation how many people would not buy.

All right, someone has to do it so I’m going to call BS on this. A quick search shows that you have flipped (for a profit) Harlan and SQN in the past on Commerce Corner, and have posted in other threads that the only CA wines that are in your opinion flippable are SQN and Screagle. To your credit, you have also offered to share at cost other allocations such as Rhys, so I’m sure you’re a good guy, but I also do not think you are naive. Given your history of flipping these other trophy wines here in CC (but NOT Screagle), I’m going to guess that you know full well that they frown on flipping, and so tried to sell more discretely through other channels. I, for one, am curious how the folks at Screagle found out, because if you did indeed just sell at cost and not through winebid, etc. or on CC, they must have some serious detectives on their payroll.

Though I’ve never flipped (or even offered part of an allocation that I cannot buy due to budget constraints), I’m of the opinion that it’s your wine once you put your money down, and you should be able to do what you want with it. But it’s also the winery’s choice, if they operate a mailing list, to decide who they want to sell to.


Also curious how they found out. We have many clients who choose to resell their wines. There are no bottle numbers so it would be very difficult for the winery to determine the identity of the seller as we would never breach the confidentiality of our clients.

Steve, sounds like you have a mole inside your operation. Eliminate them. [berserker.gif]

Once you pay for the wine it is yours…you can do with it what you want…

I would not waste my hard earned dollars on a company that thinks this way…

True…but it is also their wine to sell. Presumably they have the right to refuse to sell to whoever. We also saw recently that SQN frowns on flipping. Personally I’d also be unhappy if some winery cut me off. But I have to admit that I also used to be annoyed when I saw people flipping something like Rhys “Home” knowing that I’d never get an allocation of that wine even though I signed up for that list over a year before their first official release. So in another sense I appreciate wineries that take some action so that they can sell to people who want to drink their wines.

Sorry to hear this Steve. I also agree that once you buy the wine it’s yours and you should be able to do what you want with it. Besides, I think a wine that gets flipped makes the brand hotter and the brand becomes more exclusive. When they start raising the price that’s when the hype dies down. I think SE survived this because the wine was selling for so much more on the after market. But look what happened to Harlan, Scarecrow or a few others once they raised prices. The resell values weren’t as high now they are readily available, although I will admit there are other factors to consider.