Wine Direct

Both a FYI and general enquiry…

I’ve used Wine Direct from time to time over the years. They are strong on US and Oz wines

In 2018 they seemed to implode, ignoring orders, becoming uncontactable and at best sending incomplete and incorrect orders. Soon after, there was some sort of management Buy-out, renamed Wine Direct Sussex and of late have been quite speedy and reliable.

However, this year they seem to have reverted to the old problems. A mixed - 6 order I placed in March was delayed, incomplete and incorrect and remains the case despite several calls, but, worse, my last order for a same-6 case placed on the 4th April remains in limbo.

They are not replying to emails and not picking up the phone despite several attempts over the past 2 weeks.

Anyone have any insight / information as to what’s going on ?

I had the same thing with Wine republic

Update - managed to get a phone pick-up from a harassed office staff member today. They acknowledge the impasse on many of their lines; citing the fact that they “use agents” rather than buy direct. Apparently a lot of their stock is held up at Customs and Excise at the major UK ports and face a long backlog.

however, my observations would be :- can’t blame Brexit for orders from outside Europe, which they seem to be implying. Plus this problem has only arisen this year. Plus, surely TWS, even though it buys direct rather than through agents, don’t seem to be suffering from similar supply problems, unless of course it, quite sensibly, only offers wine for sale once it’s safely in the warehouse.

In short, buying from Wine Direct is on the promise of an agent to deliver the wines rather than from wine they actually stock so it’s absolutely a case of caveat emptor.

They agreed to refund my purchase and I told them I was unlikely to use them again for the foreseeable. Seems to me their business model is pretty leaky.


I had a similar issue with wine ordered for a tasting that they didn’t have in stock although they were on their website.
I called and they couldn’t have been more helpful and the customer service was outstanding. They refunded my whole order and then sent me free of charge the 3 bottles of my order they did have. I am more than happy.
I will use them again but will call to check stock.


Something similar with simplywinesdirectuk. Nothing happened until i chased them for the order a week later. Maybe a wiki of suppliers and people’s experiences might be useful.

Uuh, the owner’s business has been imploding, not sure if it affected Wine Republic, but it’s been all over the press here.

Fun fact, if you use a credit card (as opposed to a debit card or other payment mechanism) then, for purchases over £100 (and below £30k), you are protected by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act.

Meaning that in circumstances like these, if you place an order and the merchant goes under or becomes unresponsive and the wine never arrives, you can claim it back from your credit card company.


I had to revert to Visa Credit resolution processes to get my money back from Wine Republic.


Not strictly true as a lot of them will come in via Rotterdam rather than directly to the UK.