Sample sales are legendary, at least in the fashion world. The venerable wine glass company, Riedel, jumped into the fray with its first sample sale ever in New York City. I had the good fortune of being in NYC on sale day. Chelsea Market was the location, and I arrived a little more than 30 minutes early, and was 5th in line. By the time the doors opened, more than 50 people had cued up.
The calm before the storm:
What we found – boxes and boxes of glassware and decanters. If you were looking for the Riedel Amadeo decanter, this was the place to get a deal. Most prices at up to 70% off retail.
Also saw a lot of “tasting sets” with varietal specific glasses. I snapped up O Chardonnay glasses and tubes of the O Cabernet/Merlot glasses. I lost out on the last box of champagne flutes. There were also a lot of the Vinum and the Tyrol series of glasses. I calculated most of the glasses going for less than $10 per stem.
Within the first hour a lot of the merchandise had already been cleaned out (they did replenish stock daily). The line to check out was growing and growing. The crowd, mostly 20 to 40 somethings. Would have been nice to have carts or baskets but instead had to juggle all the boxes of glassware. At one point we heard the crash of glass breaking. The four-day sale attracted about 10,000 people; a set of six Vinum Cab glasses and decanter were the most popular item ($106.50). The O series glasses (stemless) just about sold out too, and I certainly contributed to that!
This sample sale was organized by The Prive´, and they hold many high end sample sales. I’m told they plan to hold a second Riedel sample sale in NYC this fall. To find out about this and future sales, sign up at their website: https://shop.theprive.com/ I’ll also post info as I get it here.