Naked Wines – Ladies Shooting Greedy Sheep

If you want to enter a declining market and make a meaningful dent then you better innovate.  Naked Wines is doing just that and gaining publicity by the jeroboam.

Rowan Gormley’s latest stunt was to hold a “crowd taste off” with AU$100,000 of Naked Wines purchase orders available to the winning wine makers.

The tasters were the 50 most active customers of Naked (fully clothed, I believe).  The winemakers were selected by The Government of South Australia and the Australian Trade Commission.  After rounds of tasting and price estimating, the final coup de théâtre was the winemakers themselves in a reverse auction to adjust their prices to see how much of the $100k they could take in orders.

Greedy sheep ate my hamster!

I managed to get my paws on three of the winners that will be going on sale via the Naked Wines website in the next few weeks:

The interestingly named Greedy Sheep 2007 Margaret River Cabernet/Merlot – 14.3%.

Even more bizarre nomenclature provided by Ladies who Shoot their Lunch 2008 Wild Ferment Chardonnay – 14%.

Making up the triumvirate, Chalk Hill 2006 McLaren Vale Shiraz/Cabernet/Grenache, almost boring by name but weighing in at a whopping 15.5% alcohol.

I’ll leave you to judge the value of the marketing initiative.  Was it a win/win/win/win for Naked, the Australian agencies and the winemakers?  While you ponder, I am going to have a bit of fun and guess the prices of the wines when they go on sale.

Greedy Sheep Cabernet/Merlot was my favourite and a good robust tasty wine that I would buy for about £8.  It has the peaty seaweed smell of a glorious Islay Malt (Ardbeg or Lagavulin for example).  Flavours are intense blackcurrants, wet cake mix, plums and a touch of chocolate.

Ladies who Shoot Chardonnay is unusual but tasty and probably worth the same £8.  Buttery grapefruit and orange with rose hips and a touch of honey.  Potent but tasty and went especially well with barbecued Marlin (don’t ask!).

Chalk Hill – I wouldn’t buy this one but I suspect it will be just over a tenner if only to cope with the duty.  It is an Autumn fruits jambuster – not my favourite style.  Way too overpowering for me, but I must be on my own because the 50 live tasters rated this at 4.4 out of 5, second highest score of the evening.

2 Responses to “Naked Wines – Ladies Shooting Greedy Sheep”

  1. Meg Horton Says:

    Greedy sheep also make smashing Rose – have a good look at them. 07 Rose is a great drink and at 7.5 risidule sugar, still nice and dry. Strawberries and cream palate with a dry finish. 08 Rose is raspberrries, same sugar levels and a fab finish. Either fit well with darker meats or just on own…(my Preferrence) Give it a try. Greedy Sheep is a small family run winery with wine that is easy to drink and well priced

  2. Mike Says:

    I do not understand how people do not realise the whole naked wines concept is a HUGE RIP OFF scheme. These wine makers are not necesarily small, much less depend on naked wines to survive, neither they only produce for naked wines. All those wine makers produce wine that is sold to supermarkets and shops across the UK and elsewhere…under their main (many times very well known) brands.

    Naked Wines rips off people by asking those producers to produce the exact same wine under a different label. Why? So that consumers (you and I) cannot compare prices, believe their lies, and “agree” to pay some times TWICE the regular price.

    They create a monopoly that allows them to set much higher prices for the wine, charging some times TWICE the supermarket price for THE SAME wine (produced under another name). That’s the basis of the whole Naked Wines business concept.

    I’m in the wine business and know at least a couple of producers who currently produce (or have done so in the past) wine for naked wines. The wine is exactly THE SAME the sell to many supermarkets in the UK (and worldwide). You can buy those wines in Tesco or Waitrose for 4.99, but naked wines charges you up to 9.99, for EXACTLY THE SAME WINE. That’s double the price! What a great business…

    On top of that, as said before, those wineries do NOT depend on naked wines at all. Typically they produce a few different wines (some of those producers have a portfolio of a couple dozens wines) and only a couple are labeled differently for Naked Wines (again, those same couple are labeled for the usual distribution chain – supermarkets). The volume naked wines generates for these producers is usually neglible compared to what they produce for the “rest of the world”, including most supermarket chains in the UK, for exactly the same wines.

    On top of that, those naive people that become “angels” are only making naked wines bank account grow larger, not helping any wine maker survive. Come on people, wake up!

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