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Thieves hijack Lea & Sandeman Champagne

Wine merchant Lea & Sandeman is offering a liquid reward for information on thieves who impersonated warehouse staff to steal hundreds of bottles of Champagne.

Stolen: Barnault Grande Reserve Brut Grand Cru Bouzy

The award-winning London merchant launched an appeal for information on Twitter today (12 November) following the theft, which came ahead of the key Christmas period for Champagne sales in the UK.

‘Please retweet. We’ve had two pallets of Barnaut Grande Reserve Brut Champagne pinched in Barking [East London],’ the firm said.

‘The lorry was diverted close to the delivery point by thieves posing as staff of the delivery warehouse,’ company co-founder Charles Lea told decanter.com. ‘The content of the lorry was offloaded into another vehicle.’

He said the theft included 85 six-bottle cases of Blanc de Noirs Brut Grand Cru Bouzy, as well as 65 six-bottle cases and 10 three-Magnum lots of the Grande Reserve Brut Grand Cru Bouzy. ‘All of these are exclusive to Lea & Sandeman in the UK, so if they turn up anywhere we would very much appreciate it if we and the police should be informed immediately.’

Lea & Sandeman has promised a Champagne reward for any information from members of the public.

Barnaut’s Grande Reserve Brut, from the namesake Champagne producer created by Edward Barnaut in 1874, has been praised by several high-profile critics, with Robert Parker Jnr ranking it alongside Bollinger. It is produced from Grand Cru vineyards in Bouzy, a village in the Grande Montagne de Reims area of Champagne, and made from two thirds Pinot Noir and one third Chardonnay, with an average age of five years.

Written by Chris Mercer

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