Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates - the saga has ended...(updated)

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Jim Anderson
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#951 Post by Jim Anderson » January 20th, 2017, 6:58 pm

Bill Tex Landreth wrote:
Corey N. wrote:
Darren Leininger wrote:K&L blowing out 2012 Les Chaffots

2012 Maison Ilan Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru "Les Chaffots" - Price: $43.99 *
The notes on Cellartracker are terrible.
I don't subscribe to group think. I am all in at that price.
Hard to keep track of the posts of the year on the board but how that doesn't end up in the Top 10 would be beyond me.
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#952 Post by rfelthoven » January 20th, 2017, 8:11 pm

Jim's post was freaking awesome. Well done sir.
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#953 Post by Matthew King » January 20th, 2017, 9:00 pm

This thread reminds me of someone who can't help but picking at a nearly healed scab ... :|
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#954 Post by Randy Bowman » January 20th, 2017, 9:35 pm

Funny. Faithtofruition winery, Richard Walker's winery, is about to receive some Santenay. Check the website or FB.
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#955 Post by scamhi » January 23rd, 2017, 11:39 am

"Team Building and doing things the right way
by Ray Walker
A few short years ago, I started Maison Ilan. The plan wasn't to get rich, or even to have a well known winery. The idea was such a simple one, that I called Maison Ilan a project from the time of its creation up until the last harvest. It was enjoyable to look at my winery as a bit of a Burgundy sandbox. A scenario where I get to explore behind the curtain and to see what actually made Burgundy tick. Part of my enthusiasm about my winery was based upon sharing this unique view with others. Besides, what good is an experience that you can't share with others? Well, here's the thing. Maison Ilan was a dream before it started. And once it started, it was officially a business. Sure, there are countless benefits that came of looking only to the fun parts of the business. This business was a tiny one, so it was easy to manage. And I made all of the decisions. I had no employees outside of myself. It was great. I could do well and pat myself on the back for a job well done.



Things change however. As the business grew, so did my family. The right thing to do would have been to anticipate the growth of the business and what would be necessary to move at a pace that was expected of a winery of Maison Ilan's stature. But I didn't. This was an error, for sure. And one that has had created a more difficult road. Make no mistake, I was at the driver's wheel and foolishly thought that I was doing the right thing by prioritizing my efforts towards the winemaking. More to the point, I built many aspects of the logistic side of the business on a piece-meal basis. I'd look at the immediate and near-term needs of the business and shoot! Reacting instead of anticipating was clearly a mistake as well. Importers; bottling companies; cork suppliers and more were picked based upon their reputation with other winemakers that I respected. I should have done more due diligence, but my approach was more based upon trusting what previously was shown to work for others.

Since I started Maison Ilan, there has been a feeling, an accusation rather, that my story, my opportunities and experiences couldn't be more than something out of a fiction magazine. Over the years, I shot videos from handheld GoPros during harvest; hopped into tanks while making the wines; showed videos and countless photos of bottling; and otherwise communicated the steps and progress of making of Maison Ilan wine. All the while a stream of international visitors and volunteers have made reports; tweeted; blogged or Instagrammed about their experiences working with me or visiting my winery. That said, it is still difficult for some to believe that I bought the grapes that I did and made excellent wine from them. This is, of course, in spite of piles of documentation (some of which were posted online and verified by respected names in the trade) backing up the legitimacy of my business actions. . We have had some delivery problems and other issues, but there are those who have blown these out of proportion and made accusations against Maison Ilan, and me personally, which were just not true. It seemed as though anyone could make a claim and it was cited as fact. Proving an accusation as a lie never resulted in a retraction, instead the detail of the hunt was increased. I took offense to this initially. However, I later embraced the fact that while I was living out my dream on a day-to-day basis, I myself was shocked at how much of a change my life had seen. To be sure, I didn't have much of a plan coming into all of this. I wouldn't have dared to imagine that all of these opportunities would be afforded to me. And while I find the rumors that I have heard and have been asked to answer to be baseless, I have always been an open book.

With that, I'd like to clarify and correct some things that have been erroneously said or written: 1. I own 100% of Maison Ilan. All wines that have worn a Maison Ilan label have come from fruit that was purchased and made by me, along with a series of generous amateur harvest volunteers. I have never sought out, nor received winemaking guidance. 2. My divorce did not contain language relating to Maison Ilan, nor did it effect the business in any way. 3. Wine delivery was again delayed due to administrative delays that were entirely my fault, and no one else's. The wines are still in the very same locations that they have matured in. There were three locations serving as maturity and storage facilities. The wines are to be consolidated in one location prior to shipping to ensure a simple storage and shipping process. We have a team that is working to make sure upcoming and future deliveries are done properly. There have been too many mistakes and a lack of execution. All of these mistakes could have been avoided had I taken help of others. I should have done it earlier, but I have learned from my mistakes. The team that is being put in place will include Customer Service representatives to ensure that everyone's concerns are addressed. As we have said in the past, and would like to remind everyone of again, we are putting everything together in order to get wines out to Everyone. We will not be available for contact before we have the complete team in place.

Thank you again for your patience and support. If the above is not clear enough, I will restate in short terms. I apologize for the tardiness of the delivery of wines. The wines are safe and will be delivered soon.

Ray Walker
Owner and Winemaker
MAISON ILAN
Ray Walker | January 23, 2017 at 9:31 pm

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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#956 Post by Jorge Henriquez » January 23rd, 2017, 11:55 am

Damned alternative facts.
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#957 Post by Gareth Welch » January 23rd, 2017, 12:07 pm

All he really needed was a faster wine delivery vehicle.

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#958 Post by Ian Sutton » January 23rd, 2017, 12:21 pm

Hmm, so what about the other people claiming to own Maison Ilan?

What of the Douanes involvement (are there the admin delays that Ray takes responsibility for)?

Like a politician, it's as important to look at what is NOT said, as much as what is. I don't see transparency in his words.

Interesting that this story seems set to continue, we might need more popcorn.
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#959 Post by John Morris » January 23rd, 2017, 12:25 pm

Best line:
scamhi wrote:"We will not be available for contact before we have the complete team in place."
"But they told me there would be a hand basket."

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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#960 Post by scamhi » January 23rd, 2017, 12:32 pm

John Morris wrote:Best line:
Ray Walker wrote:"We will not be available for contact before we have the complete team in place."
John- please do not attribute any of that bullshit to me
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#961 Post by ClarkstonMark » January 23rd, 2017, 12:45 pm

I'd like to know if there is any salable wine from '14, '15, or '16. Maybe someone can ask Ray
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#962 Post by Jorge Henriquez » January 23rd, 2017, 12:46 pm

John Morris wrote:Best line:
Maison Ilan's 100% Owner wrote:"We will not be available for contact before we have the complete team in place."
BUt I thought Rose WYATT was on board months ago! [scratch.gif]
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#963 Post by Marc Frontario » January 23rd, 2017, 7:00 pm

I would liked to know(if true)
Which vintage/cru/1er's were the ones left carelessly out in the harsh environment.
Has he ever addressed these alleged accusations?
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#964 Post by Randy Bowman » January 23rd, 2017, 7:50 pm

Wow. Just Wow. Totally tailored to WB and this thread.

I should have seen it coming. Anthony Bourdain featured Ray and Ray saw the new, better gig of celebrity foodie, which obviously didn't happen, so back to old Ray, but with new expectations, direction and customer service, then on to the next shortcut. Only three years, eleven months and 14 days until there is an opening for president.
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#965 Post by Craig G » January 23rd, 2017, 8:38 pm

He would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn't for those darn kids and their dog.
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#966 Post by CWun » January 23rd, 2017, 8:41 pm

So for any of you who ordered 2013 or 2014s, did people get their wine?
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#967 Post by Siun o'Connell » January 23rd, 2017, 9:05 pm

Wait ... hasn't he made the same promises several times before .. with the same "gosh, I didn't do as well as I hoped but now I've learned my lesson and hired ... "

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#968 Post by Arv R » January 23rd, 2017, 10:08 pm

ClarkstonMark wrote:I'd like to know if there is any salable wine from '14, '15, or '16. Maybe someone can ask Ray
K&L had a couple bottlings available, in their closeout bins online, $40ish maybe.
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#969 Post by Craig G » January 23rd, 2017, 10:18 pm

Arv R wrote:
ClarkstonMark wrote:I'd like to know if there is any salable wine from '14, '15, or '16. Maybe someone can ask Ray
K&L had a couple bottlings available, in their closeout bins online, $40ish maybe.
As far as I know they had only 2009-2012. Did you really see anything else?
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#970 Post by Wes Barton » January 24th, 2017, 12:09 am

Some '13s came out on the tail end of cleaning up the mess with '11s and '12. I got a couple Volnays in exchange for something I was shorted and wasn't available. Iirc, it was just some bottles of some of the bottlings, but not sure.

You can search K&L to include out of stock items. It shows 24 bottlings from '09-'12. http://www.klwines.com/Products/r?s=Sys ... =-1&z=true
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#971 Post by Scott Brunson » January 24th, 2017, 3:07 am

in for a case newhere
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#972 Post by Jorge Henriquez » January 24th, 2017, 4:46 am

Have been wanting to ask for a while now: who's is the "Ilan" in Maison Ilan?
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#973 Post by T Klonoski » January 24th, 2017, 6:05 am

Jorge Henriquez wrote:Have been wanting to ask for a while now: who is the "Ilan" in Maison Ilan?
One of his daughters (middle name).
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#974 Post by Jorge Henriquez » January 24th, 2017, 6:26 am

Thanks for th clarification Tom.
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#975 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » January 24th, 2017, 6:44 am

All the wines on KL show as hidden price or $1.

Whaddup wit dat?
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#976 Post by Craig G » January 24th, 2017, 6:55 am

Bill Tex Landreth wrote:All the wines on KL show as hidden price or $1.

Whaddup wit dat?
The hidden prices are probably the "Insider's Advantage" sales. They show up if you're on K&L's list for those sales. Sometimes old out of stock items have the $1 price; I'm not sure why, since other out of stock items show real prices.
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#977 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » January 24th, 2017, 6:57 am

OK. I have not looked at KL for years.
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#978 Post by Chris Blum » January 24th, 2017, 7:09 am

What ever happened to...
IMG_0938.PNG
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#979 Post by ki punwar » January 24th, 2017, 1:21 pm

just when I thought I was out, you pulled me back in
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#980 Post by Sean G Harden » January 25th, 2017, 6:05 am

ClarkstonMark wrote:I'd like to know if there is any salable wine from '14, '15, or '16. Maybe someone can ask Ray
Correct me if I am wrong, but there was no 2016's made? Indeed looking at Bill Nanson's article, Walker directly states that he'd been shut out of 2016's.

It is of significance that he makes no direct remark to any of Bill Nanson's article. The house which he originally rented and made the wines from has now I assume returned to the landlord so presently Walker has no property from which to make wines from. I would doubt also that he will be able to rent another property to do so given his legal history in the region. No one will touch him with the proverbial barge pole.

Really the only story to be told is those of 12, 13, and 14 sales eventually getting to their owners and then next year any 15's that he managed to sell will they get to their owners.

Yup I suggest everyone re-aquaint themselves with Bill Nanson's article to understand and realise that Walker's flair for the imaginative hasn't lessened any pileon

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#981 Post by Marc Frontario » January 25th, 2017, 7:54 am

It almost sounds like a legit undertaking that had to transform itself into a ponzi to survive.
Things started going south and the winery needed continual new money to come in to pay the outstanding debts owed...it was working until inevitably it dried up and now we are left with this.

Not clue if this is truly the case, just feels that way...Purely speculation.
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#982 Post by Gary York » January 25th, 2017, 7:58 am

Yes, you are so far off the base that you are in the parking lot. 
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#983 Post by Marc Frontario » January 25th, 2017, 7:59 am

Gary York wrote:Yes, you are so far off the base that you are in the parking lot. 
Lol....thought so pileon


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#984 Post by Jorge Henriquez » January 25th, 2017, 8:29 am

Cohort Numero Uno!
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#985 Post by Jon Hesford » January 25th, 2017, 8:33 am

In the history books, Ray will be seen as the originator of the new world of post-truth and alternative facts. He was ahead of the curve.
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#986 Post by Randy Bowman » January 25th, 2017, 7:48 pm

Ray was marketing pretty heavy in China/Hong Kong and I did notice a reply to his comment was in Chinese. I wonder if he has a commitment to buyers there. It would be in line with Marc's musings and it occurred before Ray went all Insatiable.
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#987 Post by Marc Frontario » January 25th, 2017, 9:05 pm

Randy Bowman wrote:Ray was marketing pretty heavy in China/Hong Kong and I did notice a reply to his comment was in Chinese. I wonder if he has a commitment to buyers there. It would be in line with Marc's musings and it occurred before Ray went all Insatiable.
So maybe I'm not crazy after all? Impossible!!!
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#988 Post by Rick Smith » January 25th, 2017, 9:29 pm

"I will not fail (this time)"

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#989 Post by billnanson » January 26th, 2017, 12:55 am

A sleeping giant awakens!
I sent Ray my article for his 'right of response' a few hours before I publicly linked it by publishing my September 2016 Report: https://www.burgundy-report.com/burgund ... a/09-2016/
Today a response. I hope that my transparency in this causes you no offence:

On 26 January 2017 at 09:23, Ray Walker <raybwalker@> wrote:

Bill
you will have my response shortly. For now, feel free to use the blog post that I made as a first instalment.

In short, your facts are not straight.

Ray WALKER
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MAISON ILAN

On 26 January 2017 at 09:46, Ray Walker <raybwalker@> wrote:

And Bill
I hope you have a great lawyer.
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#990 Post by Gareth Welch » January 26th, 2017, 1:26 am

Bet your pissing yourself Bill ;)

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#991 Post by Jon Hesford » January 26th, 2017, 2:16 am

billnanson wrote:A sleeping giant awakens!
I sent Ray my article for his 'right of response' a few hours before I publicly linked it by publishing my September 2016 Report: https://www.burgundy-report.com/burgund ... a/09-2016/
Today a response. I hope that my transparency in this causes you no offence:

On 26 January 2017 at 09:23, Ray Walker <raybwalker@> wrote:

Bill
you will have my response shortly. For now, feel free to use the blog post that I made as a first instalment.

In short, your facts are not straight.

Ray WALKER
Owner/Winemaker
MAISON ILAN

On 26 January 2017 at 09:46, Ray Walker <raybwalker@> wrote:

And Bill
I hope you have a great lawyer.
It's fake news folks.
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#992 Post by Gareth Welch » January 26th, 2017, 2:45 am

I'm wondering whether Ray will next market himself as Burgundys No1 natural winemaker, after all he seems to have already mastered the art of non interventionism in extremis. :P

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#993 Post by Sean G Harden » January 26th, 2017, 3:34 am

I would be surprised if he ever makes wine in Burgundy again. With the legal wrangle with the Gouges family reported by Bill in his article, which also reported the fact that Walker himself stated that the doors to purchase grapes were closed to him for the 2016 harvest. I seriously doubt whether they will be reopened to him.

Interestingly his brother stated back in November on Facebook:

"Mr. Nanson appears to be an opportunist. My brother has had to develop very thick skin in order to endure the obsessive attacks of a persistent few for quite some time now. My only hope is that they continue the libelous acts so that when the actual truth does come out they cannot hide."

No the only part of this story to be told is whether those who bought 12,13,14, and 15 vintages will ever get their wines. Wine being seized in the bottle by the Douane, reported by Bill Nanson and wine from previous vintages being left in barrel unattended paint a gloomy picture.

With the association with Christian Seel "seemingly" ended and no social media of him "shucking oysters" or mixing drinks. No way back into Burgundy, maybe he'll go back to selling BMW parts :P

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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#994 Post by billnanson » January 26th, 2017, 3:58 am

Ha - that's why a certain brother wanted to be a facebook friend when my report came out - shame I stopped with FB a while back. I didn't even include the various infos about 'family' and Santenays - but then I couldn't be 100% sure of the legitimacy of 'my' anonymous source, and chose not to be potentially 'libelous'
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#995 Post by Dennis Borczon » January 26th, 2017, 5:25 am

" I really have enough material to write a second book. My lender suggested anyway that we miss a harvest in 16 and then pick up the contract again in 2017 – I had to tell him that it didn’t work like that.“

Forget the next "Game of Thrones" book. I am waiting for this one to be published...

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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#996 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » January 26th, 2017, 5:28 am

Sean G Harden wrote:I would be surprised if he ever makes wine in Burgundy again. With the legal wrangle with the Gouges family reported by Bill in his article, which also reported the fact that Walker himself stated that the doors to purchase grapes were closed to him for the 2016 harvest. I seriously doubt whether they will be reopened to him.

Interestingly his brother stated back in November on Facebook:

"Mr. Nanson appears to be an opportunist. My brother has had to develop very thick skin in order to endure the obsessive attacks of a persistent few for quite some time now. My only hope is that they continue the libelous acts so that when the actual truth does come out they cannot hide."

No the only part of this story to be told is whether those who bought 12,13,14, and 15 vintages will ever get their wines. Wine being seized in the bottle by the Douane, reported by Bill Nanson and wine from previous vintages being left in barrel unattended paint a gloomy picture.

With the association with Christian Seel "seemingly" ended and no social media of him "shucking oysters" or mixing drinks. No way back into Burgundy, maybe he'll go back to selling BMW parts :P
He can always get back into real estate or stock trading. He conquered those so readily.
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#997 Post by Chris Blum » January 26th, 2017, 6:43 am

His lender suggested that he "miss a harvest"???

Why on earth would a lender suggest that his borrower just take a year off from his core business?
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#998 Post by Corey N. » January 26th, 2017, 7:21 am

Chris Blum wrote:Why on earth would a lender suggest that his borrower just take a year off from his core business?
So he could learn how to run a business?
I'm with Corey on this. - Todd W.

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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#999 Post by Chris Blum » January 26th, 2017, 9:37 am

[politics removed by admin]
"Well, wine only turns into alcohol if you let it sit" -- Lucille Bluth
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Ray Walker & Maison Ilan updates, July '16 (the saga continues)

#1000 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » January 26th, 2017, 10:32 am

Ray Walker announces he will soon reveal his alternative facts explanation about Maison Ilan on Facebook.

"I will have open interviews coming up on the latest with MAISON ILAN. Also, I will be starting The Road to Burgundy's Follow Up today. Nothing will be left out, names included!

Folks have been given a few years to speak without facts regarding my personal and professional life without hearing my side of things. Well, since folks are interested, I'll be of help in shedding some light on ALL aspects of the wine world that I have experienced. This of course includes critics, importers, "brokers" and conflicts of interest. Really interesting stuff. Stay tuned!"
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