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Vinissimus question

Hello everyone, quick question: has anyone used Vinissimum recently? If so, is delivery reliable (as in, arrives when it says it does)? I am due to deliver a Friuli session for the Sussex Wine School, and wines are not so easy to come by, and the ones I want to showcase might blow the budget… :roll_eyes:

Used them in February. Process took about 2 weeks from order to delivered. ISTR they don’t give you a specific time date, but a spread (like say ‘delivery estimated 2nd - 4th March’).

All arrived present, correct and well packed. I’d have to check my emails, but I seem to recall reasonable tracking data.

Edit: And as it was only 6 bottles, there weren’t any nasty surprises with regard VAT etc.

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Music to my ears… thank you! :+1: :grinning:

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I’d echo @Tannatastic’s experience. Delivery dates are a bit vague and depends whether what you are buying is available immediately but if you’ve got a few weeks to spare I’d recommend them, particularly for stuff that’s hard to find over here. Well packed too. Never had a broken bottle. DHL did manage to lose an entire order of 12 bottles just before Christmas, but I couldn’t fault Vinissimus’ response.

Courier tracking info only kicks in once it’s in the UK, but the parcel normally arrives very soon after that. Before then you get milestone updates - received your order, your order has shipped, DHL have been notified of the arrival of the parcel etc.

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Oooh, now then, I’m pretty certain I tracked mine from Barcelona(?), through Toulouse, and then a bit of a disappearance when it popped up again somewhere at a depot in England a day or two later.

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I currently have a dispatch note with “Estimated delivery date: 16 May - 23 May” with no tracking information yet. They’re a little flakier than they were, but still definitely pretty solid.

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Do you not get charged duty and VAT if it’s no more than 6 bottles?

There was (still is?) some vagueness (Brexit and vagueness, who would have guessed?) around when and how you’re getting charged VAT on imported wines. ISTR smaller shipments seem to slip under the radar.

Since I posted, I just looked these guys up. I had assumed they were European based but I don’t think they are, they have a UK operation. So in essence, they are no different to TWS. Their prices suggest so (in fact, a LH Cubillo 2013 is more expensive by a few quid)

I used to sometimes buy from Portugal Vineyards and their wines were cheap. They shipped from Portugal and there was no VAT or duty which more than paid for the shipping costs. I don’t do that anymore, not only do you pay taxes, which perhaps is fair enough, but there is apparently now a big courier handling fee which makes it pointless to use them. Still, it is all to TWS’s benefit because I now buy my Portuguese wines from them…

They have offices in several European countries. The wine physically comes from either Spain, Italy or France. So it’s still subject to the vagaries of the silly system currently in place.

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Sure but my point is that like TWS, they pay the duty and VAT because they have a UK operation. Obviously where the wine is made doesn’t affect that. Though it will affect delivery times if not in stock.

There are (presumably) smaller operations, like Portugal Vineyards, without a UK base that used to ship duty free and just apply local VAT (I think Portugal’s was 13%). This led to a decent saving, even with shipping, certainly for anything under 10 euros. But now, they ship ex VAT and you pay VAT and duty in the UK with a big courier handling fee. I’m not sure how widely used such operations were. I came across Portugal Vineyards accidentally. Early on, there was some talk that smaller orders in volume or value, under say 150euros, didn’t get the big surcharge but it didn’t seem worth the risk to me.

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All wine imports are now supposedly subject to import taxation. But the very system is Byzantine in it’s intent and internecine in it’s execution, hence why I’ve been warned off by people I’ve used on the continent regularly until, hopefully, some sanity prevails. As for useage, I’m guessing like most things, it is dependent on a number of factors, but certainly age plays a significant one. Trying to explain to my younger SiL - much younger than my OH, with a European partner - that what she was used to as commonplace is now not, is like trying to explain an enigma wrapped inside a riddle. I just end up getting very frustrated with the constant 'but why?'s. I don’t have the answer.

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That was wishful thinking. However, like Vinissimus, Portugal Vineyards now sort out UK tax and duty for you, so while it’s nothing like as cheap as it was (£2.23+20% more, oddly enough) they do now ship to the UK again without needing to worry about large courier charges on top of the tax and duty (which I did pay once on an order from a shop in Italy and can confirm they are LARGE).

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OK that is a new development, last time I looked, they didn’t do that. I’ll check it out. I might still find them useful for things not so easy to get in the UK, like Moscatel de Setubal and Douro.

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I find Vinissimus (and Decantelo, Fine Food Specialists et cetera) very useful for similar reasons. I have a specialist Portuguese wine shop just down the road from me so I do try to use them and haven’t used PV (or Vinha) since moving.

I just checked out the PV site. It’s still the same, if you live in the UK. They charge ex taxes then the courier company bills you. I’ve less of a problem paying duty, you could even say I was a tax avoider before and perhaps shouldn’t have been, but I do want to know the exact final cost, not leave it open to how much DHL want to bill me for.

You couldn’t, we had reciprocal arrangements across jurisdictions that helped business.

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My last Portugal vineyard delivery, I was charged VAT and duty …. That was in December … have they changed ?
@Inbar , I had a Vinissimus delivery last week , only took a week to arrive .

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Thanks, @Leah! That’s encouraging. I wonder if it’s best to stick to bottles showing in stock, to minimise delays. Stressful business, buying wine… :grin:

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I would, if they’re currently showing as oos, who knows when they will come back in :see_no_evil:

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