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Napa is missing a prominent sommelier (and his defunct wine brand and failed shipping service

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Image from amedeowines.com which went dark after Wine Executive News contacted owner Michael Greenlee about this article.

 

Prominent New York sommelier Michael Greenlee has gone missing from Napa Valley along with his failed wine brand, and defunct direct shipping company.

Left behind are an unpaid court judgment brought by a former winery client along with a series of unanswered questions, evasive and contradictory statements, claims to a company that does not exist and the conundrum of what really happened to his enterprises and why.

 

Greenlee, according to this link, has been the Chief Sommelier and Director of the Wine Program at Gotham Bar & Grill in New York City and held similar positions at Peacock Alley at the Waldorf Astoria, Le Cirque Restaurant, and the Dining Room at the Four Seasons.

 

Greenlee’s former business partner, Keiko Niccolini —  a  yoga instructor, and daughter of Four Seasons Restaurant co-owner Julian Niccolini — now lives in New York. [update March 31] After publication of this article yesterday, Wine Executive News  heard from Niccolini who said she is not missing from Napa Valley, and is still involved with the wine industry, but has not been associated with Amedeo or Myuge since mid-2015.

 

Wine Industry Insight received numerous inquiries (from among its 24,000+ subscribers) when Amedeo  went missing from its location at 163 Camino Dorado near the Napa airport. Typical of those emails is one from a large shipping company executive who requested anonymity because of corporate policies:

 

“What have you heard about wine shipping fulfillment company, Amedeo located in Napa? The operation abruptly shut down in late August 2015 & I heard that they sold their client list. Their web site is still up, but there is another company in their space. Can you offer any insight? I need to know whether to take them off my approved list.”

 

Greenlee-Twit

 

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Right-click image to view larger version.


Editor’s note:

 

This article began as a basic trade story about ventures that failed in two very challenging business sectors: winemaking and direct shipping. It’s worth noting that some of the best minds,  skilled business people and talented vintners have failed in those areas.

 

However, as I tried to determine exactly what happened, when and why, I encountered a pattern of non-responses, evasiveness, statements that were provably false and other unusual characteristics. Decades as a journalist indicate to me that those characteristics almost always point to larger issues worth reporting.

 

The following 2,101-word premium article presents the facts as they can be verified and notations of the questions that cannot yet be answered.

 

In the end, this may be a 21st-century refutation of Frank Sinatra’s statement that if you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere.

 

Wine Executive News subscribers please click here to read the complete 2,101-word article.

Also In This Article:

The full text of the following sections is available to premium subscribers of Wine Executive News.

  • Amedeo Fullfillment’s new “Bespoke … Holy Grail” philosophy” in direct shipping

  • Amedeo buys another direct shipper, WineFlite

  • Greenlee says he never bought WineFlite, but his own published words & PR say he did.

  • Amedeo integrates with ShipCompliant

  • Greenlee says “wind-down” of Amedeo was not sudden

  • Amedeo operated under Myuge ABC licenses

  • Closure of Amedeo coincided with seizure clash in at least one state

  • The odd case of Amedeo Holdings – a phantom company?

  • Myuge Wines

  • Napa Superior Court judgment, a Michigan drop box, and no forwarding address

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