The Burgundy Wine Industry part 4 - BurgDirect’s Domaine to Doorstep Model
How it Works
Sign up for free
Sign up to gain access, absolutely for free. You can choose to unsubscribe from our email campaigns at any time. We choose to have a private mailing list to prevent spam and robots from buying rare wine before real people can do so!
Receive Your Offer Through Email
You get to opt-in whenever you see a wine bundle that seems right for you and reserve it right away by going to our website. Once the offer period is over we collect all the orders and coordinate with the domaines.
Shipped Directly to Your Home
Using our long-lasting, reliable US-based freight forwarder, Cote dÓr Imports, your wine will ship directly from the domaines to their US-based temperature-controlled warehouse, pass customs, and then get delivered to your home.
It's That Easy!
Founded by Jeff Rubin, BurgDirect was created to clear up the troubles that other Burgundy lovers may have experienced when trying to get their hands on the bottles we all covet most.
Our local wine shops - and even internet shops - occasionally sell a few bottles from our favorite winemakers, but consistency of supply is rarely found, especially when it comes to boutique winemakers from Burgundy. Pricing can often be a problem too as highly sought-after wines and vintages get marked up.
We changed this by making a simple, transparent, and passionate business catered to lovers of hard-to-find Burgundy. Check out our detailed FAQ section below or contact us if you have any questions!
Why are our prices private?
Because of our long-standing relationships with domaines, we get great and competitive pricing on our allocations of Burgundy. In an effort to keep the details of our deals private and maintain these relationships, we've agreed to have the prices only available to members of our mailing list. This also keeps the offer out of the hands of online bots which can also artificially raise prices.
Is there a fee to enroll with BurgDirect?
No. There is no fee to enroll with BurgDirect or to remain on any of our mailing lists or wait lists
How do I find out when wines are being offered for sale?
When a winery makes an offer, you will receive an email that will provide you with a link to our website and the winery’s offer. We do not post any winery’s offer on our website and only members can access offers through their email and their account page on our website
How long does the offer stay open?
Each offer is generally open for ten days to two weeks; Prestige offers may be open a bit longer. The offers are made on a first come, first served basis. If for any reason the winery’s offering is not sold out before the offer closes, the winery reserves the right to extend the offer period by a few days. If the offering is sold out before the offer closes, then in the winery’s sole discretion it can add additional allocation of wines and extend the offer for an additional time
After I’ve enrolled with BurgDirect, am I guaranteed the right to buy the wines I’m offered?
Our purpose is to sell wines to people like you who love Burgundy wines and who are building a cellar of fine wines. We want members to buy and cellar their wines and to create verticals, year over year, of the same or similar wines from the same domaine. We are not a retailer and we do not compete with retailers, because we do not sell wines for the purpose of being consumed next week or next month. Our wineries are seeking to sell to collectors who value wine and value the benefits of cellaring and aging rare Burgundy wines. That said, many of the wines we sell are from older vintages so the cellar aging has already taken place in the most ideal cellar possible, the wineries’ own. These more mature wines can either be aged further or consumed shortly after they are delivered. In addition, some wines may be sold in specialty sets – often uniquely sold in the United States through BurgDirect – and these are also packaged as three- or six-bottle sets
Can I substitute a different wine for one of the wines being offered?
No. We work with our wineries carefully to select the best wines that represent what their domaines have to offer and we bundle these wines into six-pack offerings. Our wineries are in great demand and they must be able to reserve specific wines to offer to sell to you; otherwise, they would sell them to retailers, hotels and restaurants all over the world. Burgundy production is restricted; our winemakers' time is limited. The time and expense of tailoring selections to individual customers would be overwhelming for the winemakers and they'd stop offering their wine for sale directly to you
How are my wines shipped?
After the close of the offer, your wines will be picked up from the winery by our freight forwarder, which specializes in the shipment of wine from France to the U.S. The wines are stored in Burgundy in a temperature-controlled warehouse until they are shipped to the U.S. by ocean freight or by air. Once your wine is in the United States, it is shipped via FedEx or equivalent domestic shipper to your delivery address. Your delivery address could be your home, your place of work, or a wine storage facility that accepts shipments of wine on your behalf. Our freight forwarder does not ship in the summer months or when it is too warm to safely ship your wine. However, if you so choose, during warm weather months you may be able to pay an additional fee for cold-chain shipping, in which case your wine will be shipped in temperature-controlled units from Burgundy to your delivery address.
Are my shipments insured?
Yes. As part of the price you pay for the wine and shipping, you are paying for insurance for any damage that might occur during the shipping of your wine
When will my wines be delivered?
In general, it takes about 3-4 months to deliver your wine order. Why so long? Our freight forwarder will pick up the wines from the domaines then ship and land your wine in the U.S. within about 10 weeks after the close of the offer. They will then pass customs/duties and be transferred to our warehouse (2-3 weeks) where they will be re-boxed for shipping to your instructions. As discussed above, warm weather may also delay delivery of your wine. In that circumstance, we will hold the wines free of charge in our temperature-controlled warehouse until the shipping path from warehouse to final destination is expected to be cool enough to safely transport the wines
Should I wait to pop the corks or can I open the wines right away?
Your wines are probably all out-of-sorts after their long journey from domaine cellar to your home. The commonly used term, "bottle shock", describes a recently shipped wine that tastes temporarily “dumb,” or with aromas and flavors that have seemingly shut down. It often occurs in wines that have been jostled for an extended period, like when they're shipped a significant distance. Therefore, we strongly urge you to let them rest at least a couple of weeks before opening.
How am I billed and what am I paying for?
BurgDirect believes in simplicity. As is often the case in French restaurants, we sell using a prix fixe method. That is, we will list a price beside each available bundle, and that price is all inclusive. There are no additional fees, taxes or costs (except for certain special state-related shipping fees - please see our Shipping and Returns policy). We bill you in U.S. dollars using a credit card that you keep on file with us. The price you pay for each bundle includes the cost of the wine; transatlantic shipping, customs duties/tariffs and insurance; handling in the U.S. to arrange for shipping to your delivery address; and shipping within the U.S. to your delivery address (plus any special or additional charges and fees imposed by your state's laws, although these are rare)
Does BurgDirect collect and pay my state and local taxes?
No. Title to your wine transfers from the winery to you in France and you are solely responsible for paying your state and local taxes
Who clears U.S customs for me?
Our freight forwarder clears customs for you. The wine will bear their importer label as well
Am I liable for the value added tax (v.a.t.) in France?
No. Because you are buying your wine to import to the U.S., you do not pay the French V.A.T
What states do you ship to?
At present, we can ship to all states except Mississippi and Utah, although a few other states may have additional restrictions and fees. Please see our Shipping and Returns Policy for up-to-date details. We cannot ship any wine outside of the United States. (Sorry Canadians!)
What do I do if my wine is damaged during shipping?
Your wine is insured during shipping. If your wine is damaged during shipping, our freight forwarder will make a claim for insurance or you can submit a claim to our freight forwarder or the domestic U.S. courier. Insurance fees cover breakage, loss and wine specific damage like seepage during transit. Please contact BurgDirect with 36 hours of delivery if you discover any of these issues, and be prepared to take some photographs of the damage
What do I do if the wines I receive are different from the wines I was offered and paid for?
If the wines you receive are different from the wines you were offered and paid for, contact us immediately and we will make sure that you receive the wines you bought. (Note: as yet, this has never happened.)
Have you guys tasted wines from all of the wineries represented on BurgDirect’s website?
Happily, yes. It’s a necessary part of the job. You should be jealous.
But that’s not all. Because we’ve tasted wines from all of the domaines on our website, we are able to curate what we offer. There have been times when we have targeted a domaine because — due to reputation, holdings of grand cru or premier cru vineyards, critics’ scores or tasting notes — we thought we wanted to represent it. But then we went to Burgundy and we tasted the wines; afterwards, we decided we just wouldn’t feel comfortable offering them to you.
So yes, we taste the wines from all of the wineries we represent. We taste them to winnow the good from the bad. That’s why you’ll see smaller and more obscure Burgundy wineries who make offers through our website: we’ve gone to Burgundy, we’ve tasted their wines (usually in the cellar), we’ve exercised some judgment, and we’ve concluded that they make Burgundy gems you should be drinking.
Is the earth flat?
No, stupid. It’s round. The ancient Greeks had that figured out, even if Kyrie Irving hasn’t.