Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Friday, 8 April 2011

Oddbins: top lawyers acting as consultants + geeky quiz

'Squire Sanders Hammonds wins advisory role on Oddbins administration
Squire Sanders Hammonds has picked up a lead role acting for Deloitte on the administration of struggling wine retailer Oddbins.

Read the rest here.

2010 Semillon Sauvignon Blanc, miles from nowhere

Geeky Friday afternoon quiz
This 2010 Semillon Sauvignon Blanc (£7.99) from Margaret River and made by miles from nowhere is a new arrival in Oddbins. Apparently it came in a couple of weeks ago and is a line the chain has not stocked before. The suggestion that Oddbins' staff have nicknamed it far from solvent is probably only an ugly rumour from a misplaced source.

What's unusual about about the labelling of this wine?


Tim Carlisle said...

The alcohol % is not to the nearest .5% as you might expect. Does that mean that it is actually 12.5 but they wanted to show it being less than 12?

Anonymous said...

The alcohol level is low, but also illegal in Europe because it doesn't end in a 0 or 5.

Jim's Loire said...

Tim and anon. Quite right it is the 11.8% alc listed on the back label which is unusual.

According to John Boodle of the Wine Standards section of the Food Standards Agency it is technically illegal as UK labelling laws require the alcohol to be expressed in steps of .5 as anon states.

He did say, however, that if it was the first time that a particular wine had been shipped they wouldn't ask for the wine to be relabelled. Rather they would ask that it was correctly labelled for the next shipment.

All this assumes that the alcohol level given on the label is accurate.

Rod Smith said...

Frankly quite refreshing (possibly literally) to see an Australian wine in the UK with an alcohol starting with 11-something in any case.

I hope the supplier's bill gets settled..!

Jim's Loire said...

Rod. I understand the bill was settled.

Anonymous said...

So, who was the lucky supplier?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for clarifying, Jim. We were wondering about the ABV when it arrived on our delivery.

Anon, well the supplier seems to have changed. When we saw the first lot was arriving in the warehouse, it seemed to be coming from Ex Cellar but the second lot arrived from Awin Barratt Siegel.

Perhaps Ex Cellar realised that 30,000 bottles was a bit much for their 4 shops and let us have some to help out.

Glad Jim knows they got paid though. Would be a shame to hear of another supplier losing out.

Jim's Loire said...

Anon. I suppose the order might have been placed originally by Oddbins and then perhaps changed to Ex Cellars Ltd?

Anonymous said...

Jim, it might have been I suppose. There was a hold up before it came in and when we phoned up we were told there was a problem with paperwork so perhaps that was why.

I'm not sure what Ex Cellar would be hoping to do with it though - it's a lot for our shops even, especially when it is pretty much all I have on the shelves at the moment. Surely it would have been easier just to have it all come in straight to head office? I hope Ex Cellar didn't take a cut for supplying us!

Jim's Loire said...

Anon. Thanks. It might I suppose of been a way of ensuring that the supplier would be paid rather than joining the list of creditors – paid cash rather than deferred terms I guess.

A cut? Perhaps you could ask Simon next time you see him?

Anonymous said...

So - let's get this straight.

A recent shipment has arrived into Oddbins very recently, probably just prior to the CVA meeting, from Ex Cellar. Is this Ex Cellar Retail owned by Simon Baile - with 3 shops in the UK?

So 30,000 bottles arrive from them and they are supposedly paid by Oddbins - let's just say that this wine is £1 a bottle that's £30,000 - but they are selling it at £7.99 on offer at £6.99 - so it must be more than that - let's say £2 that's £60,000. So for a company the size of Ex Cellar a £60,000 order must be quite a big deal? Is this the sort of business Ex Cellar normally partakes in?

30,000 bottles isn't that a bit more than 3 shops can sell - would a shop ever sell 10,000 bottles of one product?

Did any other suppliers get paid in this period and how much?

Why would the MD of Oddbins choose to pay Ex Cellar this sort of money in preference to some of the loyal suppliers on the CVA list?

Might this be something that you should investigate Jim?

Jim's Loire said...

Anon. Ex Cellar Ltd is Simon baille's company and has three shops in the Uk and one in Paris.

On the creditors list Ex Cellar is owed £70,149 by Oddbins and Awin Barratt Siegel Ltd are owed £22,617.

I bought the bottle of far from solvent (sorry – miles from nowhere) on Thursday and was told that the wine had arrived in the store two weeks ago, which would be around the 24th March.

miles from nowhere isn't stocked by the Ex Cellar Ltd shops. When I phoned a branch to enquiry I was told: "No. I've never heard of it."

Anonymous said...

Maybe it should be renamed "Miles from the truth"

rodbod said...

I know I'm whistling into a storm, but even when it's Australian I still write Sémillon on the shelf talkers. Or is that not the geeky you meant?

Jim's Loire said...

rodbod: fair point not what I had in mind, which was the 11.8% alcohol. As Sémillon comes from France where it has an accent I suppose it ought to have one in Oz but they prefer to lose it.