A New York Times columnist admitted he was swindled out of $6,300 by 88-year-old noted winemaker Shelly Lehman, but spent another $400 on a case of expensive wine, which also never arrived. rice field.
Times columnist James B. Stewart I wrote in my Thursday column In 2016, he paid Cherie Lehmann 2015 Bordeaux for four cases, knowing that the bottles would be shipped after about three years of aging.
Fine wine store on Park Avenue — economic hardship and claimed The Post first reported on the customer’s overeating — Pioneered the pay-up-front model in the 50s when wealthy New York clients began investing in wine.
After paying upfront for 48 Bordeaux, Stewart also purchased futures on the 2016 and 2019 blends, which were due to deliver in 2019 and 2022, respectively. He lost a total of $6,300.
Years passed, and no case of wine appeared, Stewart said. Shelly Lehman reportedly had a delayed delivery due to the pandemic.
Nonetheless, Stewart returned to Sherry Lehmann again in the spring of 2022, handing over another $400 for a case of white Burgundy wine he said was in stock. he never received it.
When Shelley Lehman contacted the company, she initially claimed that the item was backordered, but then stopped responding to Stewart’s emails and phone calls.
Eric Andrus, a spokesman for Shelly Lehman, said he had heard Stewart was writing a column about the situation in The Times, and the wine store found four cases of Stewart’s 2015 bottles, but Stewart He said he claimed he could not deliver because he moved. after ordering.
Stewart said Andras did not mention the missing futures orders for 2016 and 2019.
Meanwhile, records obtained by The Times show that Shelly Lehman failed to deliver more than $1 million to customers who paid for the wine in advance.
The $1 million debt includes customers of Wine Caves, a storage business run by Shelly Lehman owners Shaida Gilmer and Chris Green for high-paying Shelly Lehman clients. do not have.
Four former employees said they believed Shelley Lehman stole customers’ rare bottles from the Wine Cave and sold them to other customers, according to the column.
According to The Times, Jamie Ritchie, who was then the worldwide head of Sotheby’s Wines (now the auction house’s global head of wines and spirits), had at least one of his clients store wine in the wine cave. He even warned that the bottle being detained was in danger.
That client was Fredric Mack, former chairman of 92nd Street Y, a non-profit cultural and community center in New York City.
Richie reportedly warned Mac about the bottles being kept in the wine cave in November, and Mac immediately tried to retrieve them.
Mack told The Times that only a portion of the expensive wine was delivered. He said he called Gilmer earlier this year to complain about the stock shortage and was reassured the wine was being delivered.
The bottle never showed up, and Mack is still missing a lot of expensive vintages from France and Italy.
In an interview Wednesday, Mr. Gilmer insisted that the story of Mack’s missing bottle was not true. He told The Times that all of Mack’s wines, which were stored at Wine Caves storage in Pearl River, New York, have already been delivered.
Gilmer also asserted that the company never sold wine from Wine Cave without the permission of the bottle owner, The Times reported.
But Carlos Felipe, director of warehouse operations at Shelly Lehman, told The Times in an interview that Gilmer had instructed him to ship selected bottles of wine from New York’s Wine Cave to another storage center in New Jersey. said.
The delivery took place on March 15, according to photos of the bottles in transit sent to The Times.
Felipe said the bottles being asked to move originally belonged to oil billionaire Sid Bass, who is worth $3.9 billion, and two other Shelly Lehman clients.
The wine was originally purchased by Bass, but ownership passed to ex-wife Mercedes Bass when the couple split in 2011. A source close to Mercedes-Bus told The Times that she did not approve the sale or transfer of the wine. .
Asked about the transfer of Bass’ wine, Andras said the bottle was mistakenly transferred and was returned to the New York Wine Cave storage unit the next day.
The driver who brought the bottles to New Jersey told The Times that Andrus was wrong, but declined to comment further.
“The New York Times article about Shelly Lehman was riddled with factual errors and misrepresentations. It’s based on former employees who left the company a long time ago, anonymous sources, and secondary sources,” Andras told the Post.
Bass reportedly took all the wine out of the wine cave as a result of the alleged mix-up. “Every bottle and every case will be delivered,” Gilmer said, according to The Times.
It’s unclear how many bottles of wine Bass owns or how much her stash is worth.
Felipe then quit his job at Shelly Lehman after working for a week without pay. He also said Gilmer threatened lawsuits if he spoke to the media or disclosed his dealings with Wine Caves.
The Post announced on March 9. Shelly Lehman closed abruptly after being issued a cease and desist order Failure to renew the liquor license.
SLA renewed and approved Shelly Lehman’s license on May 22, and the iconic New York store opened Reopening by April 4th.
However, according to invoices reviewed by The Times, Shelly Lehman continued to sell wine for about two weeks when the store was closed.
An invoice dated March 13 shows Sherry Lehman sold $358,000 worth of wine to a North Carolina-based real estate developer, The Times reported.
The deal included bottles of the 1995 Domaine de la Romanée Conti La Tache and the 1992 Petrus, which sold for $7,995 and $4,895 a bottle, respectively.
The bill listed Gilmer as the employee who completed the transaction, The Times said.
At the time, it was no secret that Shelley Lehman was running out of money due to a $3.1 million sales tax bill levied on New York State in 2022.
Earlier this year, two wealthy wine lovers sued the store, accusing it of owing more than $800,000 for undelivered merchandise.
However, despite the lack of funds in the wine store, Gilmer and Green weren’t shy about rewarding themselves with the finest bottles of Shelly Lehmanthey took it to fancy restaurants nearby and enjoyed it with dinners at places like Nobu 57, La Goulue and Post House, a source told the Post.
“When your employees see you walking out the front door every day with two magnums of champagne and burgundy, that’s not a good message,” said a former Shelley Lehman executive. Noting that it is notorious for being very long, he said: “We used to joke that Nobu 57 was. [Gilmer’s] The office is open from 11am to 11pm.”
CEO Gilmer joined Shelly Lehman as a sales representative in his 20s and became a partner in the business in 2007. Green, meanwhile, worked at a hedge fund before investing in Shelly Lehman in 2013 and becoming a co-owner.
https://nypost.com/2023/05/25/ny-times-reporter-admits-sherry-lehmann-stiffed-him-out-of-6300/ NY Times Reporter Admits He Was Sent $6,300 From Shelley Lehman