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05.10.2011

The Perils of the New Wine Economy

We live in remarkable times. The pace of technological innovation and the remarkable changes that globalization has wrought upon the world economy are staggering in their scope. As wine lovers, we have never had access to more great wines at any time in history.

The ways and sources of buying wine have exploded in the last twenty years. We've gone from a wine economy that was rooted in local retail stores (and some large multi-national auction houses) to a modern, globalized world of e-commerce, where most of the wines that anyone could want to get their hands on are available online.

Peer-to-peer wine sales have gone from the fringes of awareness to being mainstream while the relationship between producers and consumers also grows ever stronger.

In this brave new world, it's no surprise, then, that the idea of buying or selling wine on Craigslist would arise at some point. I mean, you can pretty much buy anything on Craigslist, so why not wine?

Well that's precisely what Quy Duc Nguyen thought when he saw some Chateau Lafite Rothschild up for sale in Queens, NY. Unafraid to make the trek from California to locate some great bottles, he was rewarded with genuine wine at a price he wanted to pay.

But when he made a second trip for a second vintage of Lafite, instead of returning home with collectible bottles, he stumbled into the street bleeding from a head wound and robbed of the $40,000 cash he had brought with him to make the transaction, according to newspapers.

Apparently some deals are too good to be true. Note to self: Craigslist is not the right place to buy vintage First Growths. Ouch.

Read the full story.

Comments (4)

Martin Silva wrote:
05.11.11 at 5:48 AM

This post should be titled, "The Perils of Craigslist". I think the New Wine Economy is working just fine. From the title of the article, I was expecting a broader statement about wine commerce - a bit misleading.

05.12.11 at 7:11 AM

I wonder how he knows that the first lot was "genuine" wine.

lori wrote:
05.12.11 at 9:51 AM

I'm always surprised by people who are duped by "too good to be true" deals regardless of where they are offered. Buyer beware is my motto.

Cliff wrote:
05.16.11 at 5:05 AM

Ha. I still say that anyone who pays $3,000 a bottle deserves what they get -- good or bad. Investment for the future? Uhhhh. I'll drink to that!

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