quote:
Return wine purchased greater than 30 days ago for gift card

I don't see this happening at every LCBO, you must have some contacts that allow you to do this. My approach:
- rebuy VSO product at marked down rate
- exchange old VSO product while waiting for new product to arrive for something new you want to buy (requires receipt to get original purchase value back and needs to be greater than what you paid in total from the initial purchase)
That is the policy. If they won't do it. Make them.

Even still, forgo the gift card step. Bring the old bottles with you when you go to pick up the new bottles. Return new bottles for cash, exchange old bottles (with receipt showing purchase price) for new bottles.
Here's the challenge: I ordered via Vintages Direct at full price. They've since dropped the price and have sold out. It's still listed on the website, though. at the sale price.

Once my order arrives at my local store, could I go the store and pick it up, immediately return it for a refund, and then buy back the same bottles at the reduced price? I think I'd need to find a sympathetic manager, but logistically I don't see why this wouldn't work.

EDIT: Just after I posted this, I got the call that my Gatinois Grand Cru has arrived. I'll pick it up after work and see if I can swing the discounted price.
quote:
Originally posted by AML:
quote:
Originally posted by vijay:
I would love to see where the policy states that. Can you please provide a link? The only one I see here is for Returns within the 30 day mark:
http://www.lcbo.com/products/returningproducts.shtml


You can return product after the 30 day window for credit. Per customer service, this includes placing the credit on a gift card to be used at a later date.


LCBO Customer Service is about as reliable as their website. I too have encountered situations where the store didn't allow gift cards for over 30-day exchanges. Logically, it shouldn't make a difference and may even be to their benefit if the gift card is lost, but logic and LCBO are not always on agreeable terms.
Both Champagnes and Brunellos that were discounted on the VSO website are now gone. Not gone as in sold out, but gone as in no longer listed on the Vintages or LCBO websites. A search for the product codes returns nothing.

I know the Gatinois sold out a few days ago and there was only 1 bottle of the Fleury remaining as of last night, but there was plenty of the Canalicchio di Sopra and the Fossacolle Brunello.
I ordered two of the Canalicchio di Sopra and one of the Fleury yesterday. Glad I did.

If anyone pops one of these can they post a note?

I've noticed that when product sells out on VSO it usually gets pulled rather than still showing up with an inventory of zero.
quote:
Originally posted by Wine Canuck:
I've noticed that when product sells out on VSO it usually gets pulled rather than still showing up with an inventory of zero.


That makes sense, except that it showed over 100 bottles of the Fossacolle as of 7 AM this morning (I happened to look at it), and two hours later it was removed from the system.
quote:
Originally posted by sunnylea57:
Here's the challenge: I ordered via Vintages Direct at full price. They've since dropped the price and have sold out. It's still listed on the website, though. at the sale price.

Once my order arrives at my local store, could I go the store and pick it up, immediately return it for a refund, and then buy back the same bottles at the reduced price? I think I'd need to find a sympathetic manager, but logistically I don't see why this wouldn't work.

EDIT: Just after I posted this, I got the call that my Gatinois Grand Cru has arrived. I'll pick it up after work and see if I can swing the discounted price.


UPDATE: No problem getting the lower price. When I picked it up on Tuesday, the manager wasn't in. I went back to the store today and the manager rang through the refund at full price, which put the 2 bottles back into their inventory. He was then able to sell them to me again at the discounted price. He did it all in a single transaction, which netted in a $30+ credit to my VISA. I didn't even have the bottles with me. Just my receipt.

So for future reference, if it's within the 30 day window, the process is very simple. Get the store to refund it at full price and then sell it to you again at the discounted price.
The size of the discounts has been shrinking to the point where it doesn't seem worth leaving home for.

When they first discovered the joy of bin ends, the discounts were up to 50% and they have been shrinking ever since. Now you see some wines at their discount center that are shown at '$1 off'. They don't seem to have any rational philosophy about how to manage stock turnover.
The discounts we have enjoyed over the past 6-8 months were driven by a realization in mid-2013 that LCBO warehouses contained 40,000+ cases of excess inventory. That inventory has now been depleted to the point where such generous discounting is no longer required.
quote:
Originally posted by VinT:
The discounts we have enjoyed over the past 6-8 months were driven by a realization in mid-2013 that LCBO warehouses contained 40,000+ cases of excess inventory. That inventory has now been depleted to the point where such generous discounting is no longer required.

Do you really think that Vintages cleared out all that inventory? I would predict that we (as taxpayers) are the proud new tenants of a new larger-than-ever warehouse with increased space that needs filling.
quote:
Originally posted by VinT:
According to a well-placed informant deep inside the KGBO, the excess inventory has indeed been cleared. It's back to gouging as usual.


I realized while reading these posts that it's actually been quite a while since I've bought anything more than a daily drinker from the KGBO. With all the frustrations stemming from poor selection, ridiculously high prices, impossible-to-win lotteries and the new first-come, first-serve approach for extremely low-inventory wines, I'd now estimate that about 75% of my wine budget goes to US or German wine retailers. My cellar is now housed in about 4 different places...which is another problem altogether (but a MUCH cheaper one for now)!
More of my money has also been going to US wine auctions, foreign purchases (Italy for me), and to direct purchases from agents. There is absolutely no way that I am going back to the days when I'd set my alarm to go line up to buy a bottle of wine on release day.

The first-come, first served approach they have taken to Classics is basically a reversion back to the old communist method of distribution, and I'm not doing that. I used to buy something from every Classics release, and now I have missed every one since the switch to the new first-come, first served format. I also skipped the Dominus silliness. Having broken the habit, it feels rather refreshing.

Fortunately, I travel enough that I'm not dependent on the LCBO, but I feel for the folks that have no choice but be jerked around by the swings in LCBO policy.
quote:
Originally posted by shavez:
quote:
Originally posted by VinT:
According to a well-placed informant deep inside the KGBO, the excess inventory has indeed been cleared. It's back to gouging as usual.


I realized while reading these posts that it's actually been quite a while since I've bought anything more than a daily drinker from the KGBO. With all the frustrations stemming from poor selection, ridiculously high prices, impossible-to-win lotteries and the new first-come, first-serve approach for extremely low-inventory wines, I'd now estimate that about 75% of my wine budget goes to US or German wine retailers. My cellar is now housed in about 4 different places...which is another problem altogether (but a MUCH cheaper one for now)!


Shavez: Retailers in Germany or retailers of German wine? If German retailers, I have been toying with the option of buying wines on-line from European retailers, for shipment here or just across the border, but have not taken the plunge yet. Would enjoy chatting about that, if you have time. jhcolman at rogers dot com.
quote:
The first-come, first served approach they have taken to Classics is basically a reversion back to the old communist method of distribution, and I'm not doing that. I used to buy something from every Classics release, and now I have missed every one since the switch to the new first-come, first served format. I also skipped the Dominus silliness. Having broken the habit, it feels rather refreshing.

Agree 100%

Fortunately, I travel enough that I'm not dependent on the LCBO, but I feel for the folks that have no choice but be jerked around by the swings in LCBO policy.
quote:
Originally posted by shavez:

With all the frustrations stemming from ... impossible-to-win lotteries and the new first-come, first-serve approach for extremely low-inventory wines...


This may be a dumb question, and I don't want to appear to be defending the LCBO, but for the "extremely low inventory wines" ... what model of allocation would people like to see?

We've swung from the lotteries to the first-come-first-serve model, and based on posts on this board people seem to hate both.

By definition, the demand is exceeding the supply for these wines, so someone is going to miss out and be disappointed. Not sure I can envision a system where everyone is happy.

Is it simply that they should be purchasing greater quantities of those wines?
I prefer the first-come, first-served model. That way, if I miss out because it's 8:32 or 8:35 or 8:45am on the online ordering day, it's my fault for not getting in sooner. The allocation system was always terrible and there were many, many times that I got two bottles or something at most when I wanted 4, 6, or more.

I'm sure it will happen at some point, but I've yet to miss out on anything in the new Classics format that I really wanted.

Early bird gets the worm and all that. And if it doesn't, there's always another worm.
Both the lottery and first-come, first-served approaches have their faults, but I really don't care any more which method they choose. It's not very often that I'm after one of the extremely low inventory products. Even the Produttori in the last release wasn't particularly difficult to get a hold of, provided you were online right at 8:30. And if I had missed it, it wouldn't have bothered me. I'm getting a bit zen-like in my approach to wine buying. It took a friend to point out the obvious to me when he said, "There will always be more wine. Perhaps not that bottle. But one that's equally good, if not better."

While I wish that Ontario had a competitive open market system for wine retailing, there are times when their strict pricing formula works to our advantage. Other times, not so much.

If I were living in California, some things would be considerably cheaper than here. Other things would be more expensive.

I'd love to live in the Cote d'Or or Provence (really I would), and I expect that the quality and variety of French wine that I buy would increase dramatically without having to spend more than I spend now on French wine. But I wonder what the cost of new world wines would be like in France. Or even the cost of wines from other European countries. (I have no idea about the relative cost of, say, Barolo in France vs. Canada or the USA. Can anyone enlighten me?)

Anyway, no matter where you are it's always a bit of a trade-off. The flaws of Ontario's wine retailing are legend, but between the KGBO, the various distributors, the SAQ, and shipping from US retailers/auction houses to Lewiston, I think we have great choice, if not the best price.
Hey Web,

You nailed it with 'extremely low inventory wines'. Even though people complain about both, I find the lottery situation at least more fair. The first come first serve basis is heavily biased against anyone who cannot schedule their week and day around the 8:30 AM Thursday release. Since most of the popular 'low volume' wines seem to be gone by 8:32.

At least with the lottery system it seemed to place people on a somewhat even footing. There is no perfect way to allocate wine that is in such high demand and low quantity.

Just my 2 Cents

Like OTW, I'm now less inclined to participate in the Classics , and will not go back to standing in line at Stores on a Saturday morning. Mind you, I gave up standing at stores waiting for the allocation in about 1999. I actually only did that once, and was cured of any desire of repeating the exercise.
quote:
Originally posted by futronic:
I prefer the first-come, first-served model. That way, if I miss out because it's 8:32 or 8:35 or 8:45am on the online ordering day, it's my fault for not getting in sooner. The allocation system was always terrible and there were many, many times that I got two bottles or something at most when I wanted 4, 6, or more.

I'm sure it will happen at some point, but I've yet to miss out on anything in the new Classics format that I really wanted.

Early bird gets the worm and all that. And if it doesn't, there's always another worm.


Isn't the question of bottle limits a separate question from first come or lottery? On the latest release there was a notice that bottle limits would be removed after 12:00, indicating that there were bottle limits in place.
quote:
Originally posted by VinCentric:
quote:
Originally posted by futronic:
I prefer the first-come, first-served model. That way, if I miss out because it's 8:32 or 8:35 or 8:45am on the online ordering day, it's my fault for not getting in sooner. The allocation system was always terrible and there were many, many times that I got two bottles or something at most when I wanted 4, 6, or more.

I'm sure it will happen at some point, but I've yet to miss out on anything in the new Classics format that I really wanted.

Early bird gets the worm and all that. And if it doesn't, there's always another worm.


Isn't the question of bottle limits a separate question from first come or lottery? On the latest release there was a notice that bottle limits would be removed after 12:00, indicating that there were bottle limits in place.

Indeed you are correct... they are separate questions. I doubt very many of us out there would argue in favour of allowing one person to corner the market on a particular wine (even allowing for sunnylea's comment about there always being more grape juice out there!). And there may have been some suspicion that this did happen in the case of the Noval port where 11 bottles disappeared in an instant. So surely, fairness dictates that some kind of sharing mechanism is required for bottles with extremely limited quantities.

The first come, first served method of release is just the virtual equivalent of lining up outside the door at your local LCBO on release day... except you can't actually queue up, so it turns into the electronic version of a door-crasher with everyone sitting there watching their clock and making the charge at the same moment. Reminds me of shopping for turkeys at Honest Ed's at Christmas. Seems a bit silly, no?
quote:
Originally posted by on the wine:
Reminds me of shopping for turkeys at Honest Ed's at Christmas. Seems a bit silly, no?


Makes me think of the classic WKRP "turkey" episode. "Oh the humanity! People are running about. The turkeys are hitting the ground like sacks of wet cement!"

Wait a sec, that's the solution! Instead of a first-come, first-served online sale, they can just gather everyone in the Summerhill LCBO parking lot and throw the bottles out of a helicopter.
quote:
Originally posted by sunnylea57:
quote:
Originally posted by on the wine:
Reminds me of shopping for turkeys at Honest Ed's at Christmas. Seems a bit silly, no?


Makes me think of the classic WKRP "turkey" episode. "Oh the humanity! People are running about. The turkeys are hitting the ground like sacks of wet cement!"

Wait a sec, that's the solution! Instead of a first-come, first-served online sale, they can just gather everyone in the Summerhill LCBO parking lot and throw the bottles out of a helicopter.


"As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."
quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Hayes:
quote:
Originally posted by sunnylea57:
quote:
Originally posted by on the wine:
Reminds me of shopping for turkeys at Honest Ed's at Christmas. Seems a bit silly, no?


Makes me think of the classic WKRP "turkey" episode. "Oh the humanity! People are running about. The turkeys are hitting the ground like sacks of wet cement!"

Wait a sec, that's the solution! Instead of a first-come, first-served online sale, they can just gather everyone in the Summerhill LCBO parking lot and throw the bottles out of a helicopter.


"As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."



Best sitcom moment ever
quote:
Originally posted by The Web:
quote:
Originally posted by shavez:

With all the frustrations stemming from ... impossible-to-win lotteries and the new first-come, first-serve approach for extremely low-inventory wines...


This may be a dumb question, and I don't want to appear to be defending the LCBO, but for the "extremely low inventory wines" ... what model of allocation would people like to see?

We've swung from the lotteries to the first-come-first-serve model, and based on posts on this board people seem to hate both.

By definition, the demand is exceeding the supply for these wines, so someone is going to miss out and be disappointed. Not sure I can envision a system where everyone is happy.

Is it simply that they should be purchasing greater quantities of those wines?


I guess arguments could be made that either approach to the low inventory wines is preferable, given the archaic and monopolistic system we are forced to deal with. Either way though, we still have to deal with the LCBO - a monopoly that makes us dependent on someone else's choices on what to bring in to Ontario. I'm just fed up with this system that at best, doesn't p*ss me off, but has never made me satisfied.
And of course elsewhere if one company only brings in a small volume, you can usually buy the wine in question from another distributor, or even from one in another country - and be allowed to ship it without having to mortgage your house to be able to afford the duties!

It's the system...it just plain sucks.

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