How a Vancouver wine store owner is trying to change the game with a proprietary delivery system

Marquis Wine Cellar owner John Clerides is trying to revolutionize wine delivery.

Marquis Wine Cellar owner John Clerides is trying to revolutionize wine delivery

John Clerides may have trouble getting on his feet right now, but his company is up and running as well as it ever has.

The longtime owner and operator of Marquis Wine Cellars in Vancouver’s West End recently had surgery on his Achilles tendon and is facing a significant recovery period. So it’s a good thing he doesn’t have to worry too much about his business.

Like many liquor-related outfits in the pandemic, Marquis saw year-over-year sales spike in 2020, to the tune of around 600 percent in its case. With COVID-19 (hopefully) starting to die out, Clerides is taking steps to make sure the store keeps humming.

To that end, the Vancouver native developed WineText, a proprietary program that curates a selection of wines for those who sign up and lets them order bottles with ease. The program is still in what Clerides calls the “soft launch” phase, but it sold close to $1,000 worth of wine in its first week of action at the end of June.

Clerides, who sends orders through Canada Post, can currently deliver to anywhere in Vancouver within 48 hours. He hopes to keep expanding WineText.

“I’m one of these guys that doesn’t like to sit still,” says Clerides, noting the irony of such a statement.

“I like to service customers—if I could deliver it by drone, I would do it. And I like trying out new ideas. There’s so much great wine out there, and I wanted to give customers the chance to easily get it.”