According to a court filing, the landlord is suing the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann as well as its former owners for $3.6 million in unpaid rent and is requesting that the store on Park Avenue be cleaned out immediately.
The famed wine store Sherry Lehmann has been closed since March, when it was shut down by the New York State Liquor Authority for failing to renew its liquor license. According to a petition filed last week in New York Supreme Court in Manhattan, the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann hasn’t paid its rent since the pandemic began in March 2020.
In the recent published article by New York Post, the complaint against famed wine store Sherry Lehmann, each of the past owners are “guarantors” on the lease and liable for the rent obligation “even if they are no longer around,” according to the landlord’s attorney, Edmond O’Brien.
Michael Aaron, whose father launched the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann in 1934 and sold his stake in the company in 2007, is among them. Aaron, who resigned as CEO in 2008 and is now rumored to be retired in Florida, did not reply to demands for comment. The action also names Michael Yurch, who was a co-owner and president of the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann from 1996 to 2013. Yurch stated that he sold all of his stock in the company a decade ago and has had “nothing to do with the business since,” according to The Post.
Chris Adams, who served as CEO and co-owner of the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann over more than a decade, is another defendant. Adams, who departed the company in 2020, did not comment on the complaint since he had not yet been served. Sherry Lehmann and its current co-owner Shyda Gilmer, who are also facing litigation from suppliers over undelivered wine as well as roughly $3 million in unpaid sales tax to New York state, declined to respond to calls for comment.
As reported by The New York Times, a federal grand jury was created in June as part of a criminal investigation into claims that the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann merchant accepted customer money for large amounts of premium wine that they never delivered.
According to Patch, several consumers filed lawsuits saying that they paid for over $1 million in wine in the famed wine store Sherry Lehmann that was never delivered, as stated in a May New York Times investigation.
The famed wine store Sherry Lehmann owes $2.7 million in unpaid sales tax, as well as other bills owed to dozens of wholesalers, in addition to the $3.6 million in rental arrears.
According to Wine Spectator, the shop’s downfall may not have been unexpected, but rather had its roots in 2018, when payments to suppliers began to fail.