Vinfolio 25% Off Sale Puts Seven Stones On Firing Line

First things first, it looks like (a) Vinfolio is trying to win back customers while (b) at the same time clearing some retail inventory. They have a very nice 25% off sale.

One item that immediately struck me (and I doubt I’m alone) is that they are offering at least 4 cases of 06 Seven Stones in the sale – so an “exclusive” mailing list wine released at $175 price tag is now available at about $131. This is interesting for a few reasons. The most prominent reason that comes to mind is that the owner of Seven Stones was recently quoted in a LA Times article regarding the prices of high end cult cabs and said he’d never lower the price on his wines, blah blah blah. I’m not suggesting that I know for a fact that Vinfolio sourced its stock from the winery but knowing the quantity in which this wine is produced, I find it hard to believe that a supplier had in excess of 4 cases sitting around. In any event, from where Vinfolio acquired these bottles is largely irrelevant to the bigger point that maybe the owner of Seven Stones should learn a lesson or two from this sale – it seems as though his wine is not in as high demand as he believes and that maybe a price adjustment might help him move his own stock. All speculation, but the timing is coincidental. I was an original buyer of Seven Stones in 05 and bought the 06. For the price, I was not overly impressed with the 05 (I have not yet tasted the 06). These recent developments (mainly, my tasting of the 05) will require me to think long and hard about the 07.

Doubt they move it even at $131

The timing of this so close to the SF Chronicle article is classic!

It is also interesting that Roy stated Seven Stones is “holding off” the release of the 2007 until Fall 2010 in order to get some more bottle age. Sounds kinda like there is excess inventory of both 2005 and 2006 out there that needs to be sold through before a real glut appears. Granted we are talking miniscule quantities compared to the big boys, but still…unsold wines are unsold wines.

[u]If you’re still capable of thinking rationally [i.e. if you don’t belong to the delusional crowd which dominates so much of the public discourse in Kali], then a political shot across the bow like this ought to serve you notice that you won’t be sitting at lunch with the Kool Kids anymore, and that the long knives are being sharpened.[/u]

Compare the treatment of the Toyota Motor Corporation by the US Congress yesterday.

WTF is that supposed to mean?

Nathan, again, keep the political discussion where it belongs, please.

We all know that Roy and I are friends, so I’m going to tell you what I know and let you put your spin on it.

Vinfolio is selling the 2005 or the 2006? If it is the 05 - that is a Vinfolio problem, not Seven Stones. The 05 did in fact sell through as quickly as initially reported way back upon release (4-ish hours). If they are selling the 06, which would make more sense to me, I’m a little curious but not overly surprised. 06 was a tougher sales vintage in Napa, sandwiched between the ‘classic’ 05’s (in a stronger economy) and the Vintage of a Lifetime (if your lifetime is about 4-6 years) 2007. Personally, I think the 06 Stones is much better than the 05, having had them both many times, and I think we will see what Mr. Parker has to say about them shortly.

In a side bar, I was witness to a scene last week that I found rather interesting. Stones was at a Premier tasting next to a very culty, very pricy Napa Cab and throttled it. I saw countless people asking how to purchase the 06 and it is my understanding that the 06 is now completely sold out from the winery.

This doesn’t change anything Ron said in that interview. It doesn’t change what the distribution channel does to the wine once they buy it. But ultimately those things don’t matter, as the wine inside is all that does. And while I don’t buy $175 Cabernet (or pinot, or chardonnay, or or or), you could spend it on much worse.

[scratch.gif] [foilhat.gif]

Wait…you and Roy are friends?

I must still be drunk from last night. Where is that delete button…

BTW - the 07 Chateau Boswell wines are pretty damn good and 01 Peter Michael ‘Le Carriere’ Chard - still a baby. And in case you didn’t know it - everything off To-Kalon in 07 rocks. Did Boswell, TOR & Realm side by side - yes please.

The LA Times hit-piece was part of a carefully crafted political campaign which has very old and very powerful roots in this country.

You are now seeing the real-world consequences of that hit-piece.

You folks can walk up and smell the coffee, or you can go on slumbering and allow this political agenda to destroy you [although, quite frankly, given the state of affairs in Kali, I suspect that your fate was sealed a good 25 years ago, and that you’re just coasting on fumes at this point].

Again…WTF are you talking about?

I wish I could gobble up all things BTK…but alas, I entered a buying freeze last night. No more wine for the rest of the year.

Two corrections, which I’ve made in my original post –

This is the 06 Seven Stones. Thanks for pointing that out, Bill. I realized that I may have mis-typed when I read your post. Second, I corrected the newspaper – the article was in the LA Times.

Would this be a wine buyer’s “open letter” neener deadhorse

Dude - I’m trying to find a job. Losing one of our best clients is not helping.

Here’s pepsi to this declaration being Open Letter-esque.

(I’m picking up my Miller Wine Works juice today, btw)

Nope. Just a realization that I have spent way too much coin on fermented grape juice in the past six months. At some point, the kids might need some new clothes.

I am sure that I will continue to get some QPRs at Costco, but no more big boys.

Maybe you can get a job down in The City as a male stripper or something.

Seriously, give Flannery a call and see if he needs any help. His business is booming and the website is expanding with a new service tomorrow.

William, how would you compare the 07 Boswells, TORs, & Realms? I was very surprised at some of the To Kalon WA scores.