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dementedavenger
01-08-2013, 20:55
I interacted with a bunch of Seattle area folk when I posted my introduction a month or so ago. I thought it may be fun to start a thread and get a discussion going about bourbon, rye, etc. in the Seattle area and the rest of Washington. I actually think it would be cool to have geographic-focused boards because often times I'll be reading threads and shaking my head, saying to myself, "They don't sell that here," or, "Their pricing is so much different than ours that it's just not the same thing." Additionally, I think that as the years go by we'll be talking more and more about craft bourbons, ryes, etc., many of which will only be widely available on a regional level.As my fellow Washingtonians can likely attest, being a bourbon lover in this state can be very challenging at times due to the old regulatory system, the change in regulations, and the current tax system and lack of retail power with distributors.

I'll get the ball rolling with a recap of some Seattle area liquor retailers. I'll preface my report, however, by saying that I do most of my buying online.

Specialty
The best selections I've found are Wine World (Wallingford), Emerald City Spirits (Wallingford), Esquin (SODO), Ballard Liquor Store (Ballard) and BevMo! (Tukwila, Northgate, Bellevue and Tacoma). Wine World is outrageously expensive. The guys there are really nice but they can't compete on price yet. Emerald City Spirits, which is about .5 miles west on the same street (45th), has a surprisingly strong selection and some decent prices on certain stuff. The owners took over a horrible old state store and kept all the displays. The people behind Ballard Liquor Store did the same (they also own an old state store near University Village) and their selection is fairly strong and they had some decent pricing on certain items (EC12 for $32, tax included, which was lower than BevMo!) and horrible prices on other stuff (WLW12 for ~$55, tax included). Esquin has decent pricing but their selection can be spotty. BevMo! generally has a fairly strong selection and the pricing is decent for the area. BevMo! is also your best shot at getting Van Winkle and BTAC; I bought two GTS and one ER17 from the BevMo! in Tacoma.

Grocery
Costco's selection is surprisingly poor and their prices are not anything special. I hate their Kirkland (Beam) bourbon, but to each their own. QFC and Fred Meyer (each owned by Kroger) sometimes have stuff on sale at decent prices and QFC sometimes has some wonky prices (Eagle Rare for $27 before tax at the store near me, which seems pretty low for this area). QFC will also do special orders if you speak to the liquor manager. The beauty of grocery stores is they don't really care - liquor is just another product and they'll happily show you the distributor price list and help you out. The Safeway stores I've been to generally have small selections and their pricing can decent. I saw 1792 Ridgemont Reserve on closeout at one near me for ~$28 before tax. It was ~$34 at BevMo! Metropolitan Market has an interesting selection and their pricing can sometimes be surprisingly good. Trader Joe's has a small selection and is typically pricing around the same mark as the regular grocery stores.

Other
Walgreens carries liquor in many of their stores. At the one near me they've put the Jim Beam Black gift set (750ml plus two rocks glasses) on closeout for $17.99 before tax, and, the Maker's Mark gift set (750ml plus two waxed rocks glasses) on sale for $21.99 before tax.

ChainWhip
01-08-2013, 21:36
Capco Beverages has a shop in Issaquah (old state store on Gilman) & West Seattle (old state store on Alaska). They have decent prices on Scotch & selection is pretty good - good selection of mini's.

Clearview Spirits are my favorites & they've got a good selection as well - two locations (in Snohomish on Hwy. 9 & in Monroe as well).

Total Wine in Bellevue (& Tukwila) has good selection & some of the best prices - too bad it's a big box store... They're literally 5min from my house & I shop @ Uwajimaya often so I stop in from time to time to see what's available.

If anybody knows where any OGD114 is in the area, shoot me a PM!

wadewood
01-08-2013, 21:53
got to chime in; having lived in Seattle from 1999 to 2007 during state run days, I know WA liquor taxes are now very high, but I'll take that any day for real competition.

dementedavenger
01-08-2013, 22:17
Capco Beverages has a shop in Issaquah (old state store on Gilman) & West Seattle (old state store on Alaska). They have decent prices on Scotch & selection is pretty good - good selection of mini's.

Clearview Spirits are my favorites & they've got a good selection as well - two locations (in Snohomish on Hwy. 9 & in Monroe as well).

Total Wine in Bellevue (& Tukwila) has good selection & some of the best prices - too bad it's a big box store... They're literally 5min from my house & I shop @ Uwajimaya often so I stop in from time to time to see what's available.

If anybody knows where any OGD114 is in the area, shoot me a PM!

I've only lived out for a little under four years but I've never seen OGD114. I actually don't see that much at online retailers.

I need to checkout Clearview. I need an excuse to go out to Snohomish or Monroe that involves bringing my toddler, LOL.

I was disappointed by the selection at Uwajimaya in the ID. I had hopes that they would have some good Japanese whiskey but they don't and their prices on other stuff are pretty bad. My secondary spirit of choice is actually Shochu (my brother lived in Japan for 10+ years and got me into it) and I've got about a dozen bottles of it that I purchased during the state-run days.

ChainWhip
01-09-2013, 00:55
got to chime in; having lived in Seattle from 1999 to 2007 during state run days, I know WA liquor taxes are now very high, but I'll take that any day for real competition.

I keep telling myself that but it hurts right now man... I think we traded in our old dictator for two despots instead.

ChainWhip
01-09-2013, 00:58
I need to checkout Clearview. I need an excuse to go out to Snohomish or Monroe that involves bringing my toddler, LOL.

Go straight to the Monroe store then hit the other one if you can. If you're in downtown Snohomish, pay Fred's Rivertown Alehouse a visit - impressive menu of beers & whiskies there.

SFS
01-09-2013, 06:42
What's the tax rate on liquor? Is it higher than the regular (combined) sales tax, which when I left 7 years ago was already 9%? Is liquor taxed twice (regular sales tax + liquor-specific sales tax)? I was there a few months ago, but didn't look at the after-tax prices - I was on vacation, and treating my hosts, so I didn't really care. (I was also giddy over the demise of the old state-control system.)

dementedavenger
01-09-2013, 07:08
What's the tax rate on liquor? Is it higher than the regular (combined) sales tax, which when I left 7 years ago was already 9%? Is liquor taxed twice (regular sales tax + liquor-specific sales tax)? I was there a few months ago, but didn't look at the after-tax prices - I was on vacation, and treating my hosts, so I didn't really care. (I was also giddy over the demise of the old state-control system.)

The current liquor tax is 20.5% + a pro-rated $3.77 per liter tax. Here are some examples. You really get killed when you buy bottom shelf.

Ancient Age - 750ml
Base Price: $9.99 (BevMo)
20.5% Tax: $2.05
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $14.87

Buffalo Trace - 750ml
Base Price: $26.99 (BevMo!)
20.5% Tax: $5.53
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $35.35

George T. Stagg
Base Price: $79.99 (BevMo!)
20.5% Tax: $16.40
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $99.22

SFS
01-09-2013, 11:44
Ouch. And of course, the shelf tags are all written in base prices, no doubt.

Please tell me that they don't add the 9% regular sales tax on top of all that.

smknjoe
01-09-2013, 11:53
The current liquor tax is 20.5% + a pro-rated $3.77 per liter tax. Here are some examples. You really get killed when you buy bottom shelf.

Ancient Age - 750ml
Base Price: $9.99 (BevMo)
20.5% Tax: $2.05
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $14.87

Buffalo Trace - 750ml
Base Price: $26.99 (BevMo!)
20.5% Tax: $5.53
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $35.35

George T. Stagg
Base Price: $79.99 (BevMo!)
20.5% Tax: $16.40
Liter Tax: $2.83
TOTAL: $99.22

Holy S#!T! What about Oregon? I always here the Portland people complaining about freeloaders from WA.

I feel sorry for you (all). I should bring a few bottles of OGD with me on my business/pleasure trip out there in the next few weeks.

dementedavenger
01-09-2013, 11:54
Ouch. And of course, the shelf tags are all written in base prices, no doubt.

Please tell me that they don't add the 9% regular sales tax on top of all that.

Most stores only display the before tax prices along with signs stating the tax scheme. A few stores make it a point to show you the "out the door" price.

No, that's the total tax. The standard sales tax is rolled into it.

MauiSon
01-09-2013, 13:33
I see why you mostly buy online.

humchan2k
01-09-2013, 13:52
The prices in WA were so brutal, I just went to see Andrew at Liberty on Cap Hill for the good stuff....cuz after all, what's better than dope whiskey and sushi!?!?! If you don't know Liberty and you live in Seattle, go fix that immediately!

LostBottle
01-09-2013, 19:19
Wine World is outrageously expensive.

I will not shop there due to their asinine pricing and I actively encourage others to do the same. $90 for a HW 21 375ml bottle? Whistlepig 111 at $156? Masterson's 10 at $91? (Prices are before the 20.5% tax).

ChainWhip
01-09-2013, 19:55
Esquin's prices are not much better than Wine World.

LostBottle
01-09-2013, 20:21
I wish nothing but financial ruin upon both of them. Hopefully, Total Wine moves to Seattle proper and makes this happen.

dementedavenger
01-10-2013, 06:19
The prices in WA were so brutal, I just went to see Andrew at Liberty on Cap Hill for the good stuff....cuz after all, what's better than dope whiskey and sushi!?!?! If you don't know Liberty and you live in Seattle, go fix that immediately!

Seconded. Canon is an experience, but an expensive one. Liberty, it's been my experience, has a more generous pour and they're very much into the idea of educating you and learning from you.

LostBottle
01-10-2013, 08:44
Thirded. The prices at Canon are stupid - at $45 a pour for Single Oak Project or $60 Pappy 20, I think he must be buying his whiskey from Wine World. Liberty gets my vote, and business.

dementedavenger
01-10-2013, 08:56
Thirded. The prices at Canon are stupid - at $45 a pour for Single Oak Project or $60 Pappy 20, I think he must be buying his whiskey from Wine World. Liberty gets my vote, and business.

Want to talk about some stupid pricing? Check out Brouwer's in Fremont. They're known for their incredible beer selection and, apparently, their odd bourbon/rye pricing. Also, they're 1.5-ounce pours seem pretty damn small.

Knob Creek: $11
Baker's: $13
Blanton's: $14
Black Maple Small Batch: $15
Pappy Van Winkle 15-Year $17
George T. Stagg: $17
William Larue Weller: $18
Whistle Pig: $18
Hudson's Manhattan Rye: $23

14657

humchan2k
01-10-2013, 10:05
Want to talk about some stupid pricing? Check out Brouwer's in Fremont. They're known for their incredible beer selection and, apparently, their odd bourbon/rye pricing. Also, they're 1.5-ounce pours seem pretty damn small.

Knob Creek: $11
Baker's: $13
Blanton's: $14
Black Maple Small Batch: $15
Pappy Van Winkle 15-Year $17
George T. Stagg: $17
William Larue Weller: $18
Whistle Pig: $18
Hudson's Manhattan Rye: $23

14657

Those prices are cheap for LA, broham.

dementedavenger
01-10-2013, 11:35
Those prices are cheap for LA, broham.

The prices aren't awful, though I feel their pours are small. The issue is the wackiness of the pricing where Hudson's Manhattan Rye is ~35% more expensive that PVW15, GTS and WLW. It's to the customer's benefit, of course, but that's just weird pricing, in my opinion. The beauty of Liberty is that I have no clue what their prices are and don't really care. I always feel like I get treated fairly there and I get my money's worth.

squire
01-10-2013, 12:25
Apparently the spirits manager is not a Bourbon guy, but hey, if that what customers are willing to pay . . .

dementedavenger
01-11-2013, 15:18
I stopped into Total Wine in Tukwila today and was very pleasantly surprised to find a big selection of bourbon. They had a few bottles of JPS18 Batch #17 for $93.99 before tax if you're looking (I found it interesting that it was on the shelf and not in the "High-End Spirits" cabinet directly across the aisle; in fact, there was no bourbon in that cabinet). Most interesting to me was the big selection of Sazerac brands that I'm totally unfamiliar with: Black Ridge, Buckhorn, Chestnut Farms and Two Stars, among others. Anyone ever tried any of these? They were NAS and seemed more about packaging than anything else. They also had a ton of bottom shelf stuff I've never seen: Black Eagle, Paddleford Creek, Southshot, Watkins Select and Winchester.

LostBottle
01-11-2013, 16:12
The Tukwilla Total Wine also has great customer service, a remarkable change from many of the people I encountered who were on the state payroll.

SFS
01-12-2013, 06:21
I stopped into Total Wine in Tukwila today and was very pleasantly surprised to find a big selection of bourbon. They had a few bottles of JPS18 Batch #17 for $93.99 before tax if you're looking (I found it interesting that it was on the shelf and not in the "High-End Spirits" cabinet directly across the aisle; in fact, there was no bourbon in that cabinet). Most interesting to me was the big selection of Sazerac brands that I'm totally unfamiliar with: Black Ridge, Buckhorn, Chestnut Farms and Two Stars, among others. Anyone ever tried any of these? They were NAS and seemed more about packaging than anything else. They also had a ton of bottom shelf stuff I've never seen: Black Eagle, Paddleford Creek, Southshot, Watkins Select and Winchester.
The Watkins Select is here at Total as well, and I bought a bottle a couple of months ago. I asked the Wine Manager of the store, who seemed to know his bourbon as well, what he would buy as an every day pour, preferably under $20. He didn't have to think long and named two bourbons. The Watkins was $17 (I forgot what the other bourbon was). It was very drinkable (though I don't remember the specifics), and I finished the bottle within a month or so, having no qualms about reaching for it equally as often as other, roughly-equivalently-priced stuff in my cabinet at the time (mainly 4R YL, and Weller SR, IIRC). At that price, I wouldn't have felt bad about if someone had wanted to mix it.

I will likely buy another bottle again in the future. It's a lot better than Dickel #12, and I liked it as much as the AA. (I can't get AAA here).

dementedavenger
01-12-2013, 21:02
If you haven't already tried it, I strongly recommend giving the Oola Cask Strength version of its Waitsburg Bourbon a try. It's young but at 118-proof it's got a real nice bite to it. I wish more craft distillers would follow Oola's lead and put out a cask strength offering. They sell it direct from the Capitol Hill distillery and Total, as well as some of the more expensive joints.

SFS
01-14-2013, 04:19
Thank demented (boy, that was fun to type). I'll look for it here, though this is a long way from Capitol Hill (in so many ways).

I used to spend a fair amount of time in the Madison area, though usually a few blocks farther east. I think I know the building they are in.

dementedavenger
01-18-2013, 19:15
Two more liquor store reviews.

QFC University Village: Former state store; the entrance is separate from the actual grocery store. A surprisingly strong selection of bourbon and rye, including two bottles of JPS18 (batches 17 and 18) for $104.99 before tax; Weller 12, which I rarely see out here, and a bunch of stuff that has totally slipped my mind now. Prices are competitive with BevMo! and Total if they've put it on sale and right now a lot of stuff is on sale. I overheard the manager talking to someone - either a distributor or craft producer - and he sounded like he knows what he's doing and is trying to turn that store into something. I think this particular store may have a lot of potential because while that QFC is on the edge of the U-District it's main constituency comes from middle to upper income neighborhoods in close proximity.

Capco Beverages in West Seattle: Local folks took over the old "premium" state store. Big selection though the only stuff they had that I don't routinely see elsewhere is OFBB, OFBIB, Willett 4-Year Rye and some real bottom shelf. It's an independent so their prices are not good. The only thing I saw that was priced lower than I've seen elsewhere is the Dry Fly Port Finished Wheat Whiskey, a 375ml bottle that still costs $30 after tax. I'm sure I'll be back, though likely just to browse.

BourbonShill
01-19-2013, 19:11
A bunch of Weller 12 just landed here last week.

LostBottle
01-19-2013, 22:11
A bunch of Weller 12 just landed here last week.

...but, if you are not a bar or restaurant....

BourbonShill
01-20-2013, 17:18
...but, if you are not a bar or restaurant....

It's open to retail. BevMo and Total buy it, not sure broad market retail knows what it is, yet. I'm sure informed consumers will ask for it and they'll catch on. Even some 1.75s for the State.

CaptainQ
01-20-2013, 17:23
Even some 1.75s for the State.

Sweet. What will those cost, $150?! :hot:

SFS
01-20-2013, 17:29
Plus all applicable taxes.:skep:

ChainWhip
01-20-2013, 18:16
$23.99 @ Total Wine (pre-tax) for the 750 of Weller 12

HighHorse
01-20-2013, 18:18
$23.99 @ Total Wine (pre-tax) for the 750 of Weller 12

A good price ... I just saw it here for $25 .. four dollars off and feel compelled to pick up a few more.

ChainWhip
01-20-2013, 20:02
It's weird because OWA & Weller 12 are $23.99 ($31.74 after taxes) while the WSR is $28.99

ChainWhip
01-23-2013, 17:16
Ended up picking up a few more of the W12 for the bunker

T47
01-23-2013, 17:31
I never thought I would miss the State Stores, but the reality is that the selection is poorer and the prices are higher. Philosophically I think it's a good thing for the State to be out of the Business and maybe one day I will see the benefit as a consumer.
In Issaquah there is a little restaurant that has a great Bourbon selection, its the Flat Iron Grill (http://www.theflatirongrill.com/whiskey-library/). Not cheap, but pours that I have not seen anywhere else.

ChainWhip
01-23-2013, 17:57
I've been meaning hit the Flat Iron but my ride buddies keep wanting to hit Hop Jacks or Final Frontier. Need to go this weekend.

p_elliott
01-24-2013, 09:11
Is the state still the distributor or do you have independent distributors? Iowa got out of the Liquor store business about 20 years ago but they are the only distributor in the state so nothing changed as far as selection.

SWC
01-24-2013, 09:12
I never thought I would miss the State Stores, but the reality is that the selection is poorer and the prices are higher. Philosophically I think it's a good thing for the State to be out of the Business and maybe one day I will see the benefit as a consumer.
.

I agree with you. Selection went down the toilet and prices went up. However, over here in Spokane a Total Wine and More opened up and took care of those two problems rather nicely.

squire
01-24-2013, 09:40
Well, that's a promising sign. As a general rule I think it's better the Stat's just collect the taxes and keep their noses out of the liquor business.

ChainWhip
01-24-2013, 09:45
Is the state still the distributor or do you have independent distributors? Iowa got out of the Liquor store business about 20 years ago but they are the only distributor in the state so nothing changed as far as selection.

I suppose our story is similar to yours - we traded out the state monopoly for a duopoly (with separate portfolios). Effectively it's a monopoly and with the higher end whiskies, selection and availability has greatly suffered.

With notable exceptions, prices have been higher due to the distributors jacking up the prices (as the tax rates have changed very little from when the state was running everything).

BourbonShill
01-24-2013, 21:32
I agree with you. Selection went down the toilet and prices went up. However, over here in Spokane a Total Wine and More opened up and took care of those two problems rather nicely.

There are more products available in the State than ever before, whether stores bring them in or not is up to them, restaurants definitely are taking advantage of the greater selection.

ChainWhip
01-24-2013, 21:40
I'd agree that selection is better except for higher end whiskies.

BourbonShill
01-24-2013, 21:45
I'd agree that selection is better except for higher end whiskies.

More there too, but restaurants are getting to them first as a lot have buyers who know what to look for vs. newer spirits store owners focusing on the top sellers across the US. They will develop better selections, the State stores were expensive to take over, so they are more worried about recouping their bid right now.

Total has raised the bar, as has BevMo. Private stores will catch up.

ChainWhip
01-24-2013, 22:12
More there too, but restaurants are getting to them first as a lot have buyers who know what to look for vs. newer spirits store owners focusing on the top sellers across the US.

I think the limited editions (BTAC, VW, Diageo, etc.,) are all really difficult/impossible to find in this state (more than usual).

dementedavenger
01-25-2013, 08:39
I think the limited editions (BTAC, VW, Diageo, etc.,) are all really difficult/impossible to find in this state (more than usual).

PHC 2012 (Master of Mashbills) has suddenly popped up in some bars (9 Million in Unmarked Bills in Fremont and Sun Liquor Distillery on Capitol Hill, among others). The only time I've seen this on the shelf in the area is when BevMo! opened their Bellevue store a few months ago (and I watched as a guy was having the last one pulled from the "high-end" case).

On this note, the presence of BevMo! and Total is a positive if you're trying to get your hands on the limited edition stuff. Their corporate policies seem to prohibit lists and pre-sales so you don't have to be a "top customer" to get a shot at getting them and there's not the same type of price-gouging that smaller stores often engage in. I bought two GTS and one ER17 at BevMo! in Tacoma a few months ago.

dementedavenger
02-01-2013, 05:53
Total in Tukwila has a bunch of JPS18 and EC20. They also had W12 if anyone is looking for it.

DBM
02-26-2013, 00:21
Lots of interesting conversation here about selection, prices and availability. I have spent a lot of time trying to understand what I should be doing, as a “normal” consumer, to at least have a chance at the limited bourbons out there, especially since the massive changes last June. The state system had to go, but one good side effect is that it was predictable. Now it’s a free for all.

As others have pointed out, the distributors in Washington State are the main cause of our problems; they restrict sales to preferred customers (bars and restaurants), lie about stock and maintain separate price lists for on-premise and off-premise buyers to discourage retail sales for some products.

Yet it’s hard to blame distributors for taking advantage of currently legal business practices that, while detrimental to whisky buyers, weren’t accounted for in the new liquor laws. The Liquor Control Board policies need to be tweaked a bit to rectify the anti-competitive nature of the current environment.

What I don’t understand is why producers still use exclusive distributors in the state. It made sense when there was only one buyer (the state), but not any longer. If I was a producer that wanted the best representation to consumers, I would use multiple distributors to encourage competition on value added services and squeeze their margins as much as possible to provide the lowest cost (and subsequently more volume) to buyers and ultimately consumers.

My primary annoyance is that the specialty stores (in the state system) used to be the best resource for knowledge and availability of the more collectible spirits. Now is appears that the specialty stores are at the bottom of the food chain and the big retailers (Total, BevMo) get most of the off-premise allocation, yet they are terrible at catering to the enthusiasts who walk past the pallets of $8.99 vodka jugs in search for quality products.

I know that EC20 and JPS18 have spotty availability, but the Total Wine Bellevue store just tells me the stock comes and goes and doesn’t care who buys it. No way to notify interested customers, no intention of helping beyond trying to always upsell their “Spirits Direct” selections which are likely a much higher margin sale. And BevMo’s selection is just poor for high end products.

ChainWhip
02-26-2013, 08:04
Welcome to SB DBM. We're in agreement with much of what you've posted - I am optimistic that things will turn for the better but it is difficult right now.

The lamest line I've heard attributed to the distributors (from more than a couple of retailers) is they have high prices on items because Washington state hasn't proven enough demand of said products in high enough volumes - Hello Mr. Chicken & Egg...

Seriously, how dumb do the distributors / retailers think consumers are? With a smartphone in just about every pocket, prices are easy to compare and it's obvious we are being ripped off (even before taxes).

In any event, glad to have you here - there is also a "New to SB" forum where people can introduce themselves to the community at large.

ChainWhip
02-26-2013, 23:33
Scouted out TotalWine in Bellevue today and there's some new items (prices are inclusive of tax):

$75.12 4RSB OBSK for 3/16/2013 Bourbon Bash (Daniel's Broiler Selection)
$123.32 Fortaleza Anejo
$87.17 St. George Single Malt Whiskey Batch 12
$79.94 Hakushu 12
$75.12 Hibiki 12
$123.32 Laphroaig Cairdeas 2012 Origins

Stupid prices.

DBM
03-08-2013, 11:07
Yesterday Total Wine in Bellevue had Old Forester Birthday Bourbon 2012 for $49.99 (not including the many taxes) so I picked up a bottle. I'm guessing it just now made it through distribution because I hadn't seen it anywhere in Washington until that moment.

There's also still plenty of the 4RSB OBSK that ChainWhip mentioned earlier for the Daniel's Bourbon Bash, which I am sadly missing this year.

ChainWhip
03-08-2013, 11:33
I think that was at least the 2nd distribution to the Bellevue store but I picked up a bottle too.

ChuckBiscuits
03-16-2013, 21:48
The Tukwilla Total Wine also has great customer service, a remarkable change from many of the people I encountered who were on the state payroll.

I have also found this to be true. Genuinely interested employees that want you to have a good retail experience. I don't know enough yet to comment upon their selection, but their beer prices are impossible to best in the area. World class selection, as well. Seattle has a few great "bottle shops", one of which is very close to home--Beer Junction. Bottleworks also deserves mention as being one of the first, and of course Chuck's Hop Shop at 85th and 6th in Ballard. None are cheap, but are certainly dedicated to bringing a huge selection of enthusiast brews to the area.

squire
03-19-2013, 03:54
I do favor places where the staff enjoy their work, which make my shopping more pleasant.

derevaun
04-04-2013, 22:20
I'm ambivalent but generally optimistic about the change. I used to have to drive to SODO or 7th/Bell to find my fave everyday pours (Old Forester and VOB BIB); now I can run over to Bevmo for Old Forester but have no clue where to find VOB. Anybody know, by the way?

DBM
04-04-2013, 22:53
I'm ambivalent but generally optimistic about the change. I used to have to drive to SODO or 7th/Bell to find my fave everyday pours (Old Forester and VOB BIB); now I can run over to Bevmo for Old Forester but have no clue where to find VOB. Anybody know, by the way?
I never saw VOB BiB before or after the regulation changes. Might be worth a call to Young's. I've had reasonably good luck talking to distributors about product availability and being directed to retailers who either stock something, or would pick up a new label if there was customer demand.

dementedavenger
08-18-2013, 19:07
I wanted to see if I could fire up this thread again with some observations and such...

1. I picked up two bottles of ECBP at BevMo - Northgate on Friday. After tax they were $60 a pop. Not sure if there's anymore out there in the area but this was the third time I've seen it on the shelf at a BevMo.

2. Been seeing plenty of Rock Hill Farm and Weller 12 on the shelf. A lot of folks outside of the area say these area increasingly difficult to find. Of course, due to our taxes, you're going to end up spending $60 to $70 for the Rock Hill Farm and $40 for the Weller 12.

3. QFC at U-Village has a strong selection and decent prices. I've seen some FR Private Barrels pop up there and they've actually got a good bottom shelf selection.

4. Most ridiculous thing I've seen: Central Market in Shoreline is a great local grocery store and they've got a relatively strong bourbon selection all things considered (Smooth Ambler on the shelves). In the "high roller" room where they keep the expensive wine they've also got some whiskey, including about a dozen bottles of Whistle Pig 111 priced to move at ~$175. I get that they compete on price but whoever is doing the buying over the got snowed on this.

5. I recently bought 15+ bottles of bourbon/rye from The Party Source in Kentucky. This was mostly basic stuff like OGD114, AAA10, Willett Rye, etc. but stuff that I can't find here (or find here for a reasonable price). Shipping ended up working out to $4 per bottle. Big-time bargain.

6. Trader Joe's consistently has the best price for Buffalo Trace in the area. I want to say that it's $23.99 before tax but it could be $26.99. Can't remember, but it's cheaper than the chains or other grocery stores.

suntour
08-18-2013, 19:49
Any SBers in the Vancouver/Portland metro area?

I wonder if there's anything decent lurking across the border we may not be able to get here. I'd definitely pay the premium to get Weller 12.

ChainWhip
08-18-2013, 19:50
Hey DA-

Were those ECBP's 134.2's?

Thx for posting up the 411.

ChainWhip
08-18-2013, 19:52
Any SBers in the Vancouver/Portland metro area?

I wonder if there's anything decent lurking across the border we may not be able to get here. I'd definitely pay the premium to get Weller 12.

There's a Total Wine & BevMo in Vancouver so I'm going to guess and say yes. You can also check inventory online & pre purchase for pickup too.

dementedavenger
08-18-2013, 20:03
Hey DA-

Were those ECBP's 134.2's?

Thx for posting up the 411.

Yes. I haven't seen anything else out here.

NWBourbonDrinker
08-19-2013, 07:52
Time for a little rant about Washington: Visiting California and really surprised by the liquor price. Total Wine has Booker's for $59.99 in Washington and $49.99 in California. Tax in CA came out to approx. $3.50 for a total price of ~$52.50. In Washington you pay $2.83 Liter Tax at 20.5% Spirit Tax so your bottle is $59.99+$2.83 + $12.30 = $75.12! I just wonder is Washington realizes that this tax drives business out of the state? I buy the majority of my bottles online and while traveling now so Washington gets very little of my tax dollar. The ones who pay the majority are the lower end consumers who can't get out of state or buy online. Good job Washington!

ChainWhip
08-19-2013, 08:38
Time for a little rant about Washington: Visiting California and really surprised by the liquor price. Total Wine has Booker's for $59.99 in Washington and $49.99 in California. Tax in CA came out to approx. $3.50 for a total price of ~$52.50. In Washington you pay $2.83 Liter Tax at 20.5% Spirit Tax so your bottle is $59.99+$2.83 + $12.30 = $75.12! I just wonder is Washington realizes that this tax drives business out of the state? I buy the majority of my bottles online and while traveling now so Washington gets very little of my tax dollar. The ones who pay the majority are the lower end consumers who can't get out of state or buy online. Good job Washington!

The thing is, the tax is pretty much the same as before the state got out of the retail/distro business. The price hikes are almost entirely due to distributors like Young's & Southern jacking up the prices.

Here's what I wrote a distributor when they tried to pull the blame-the-state-tax argument:



I disagree that the tax structure is the main culprit (I'll concede that our tax rate is high but it has always been high). Let me give you an example:

Ardbeg 10:
> State-run Retail => $39.11 + 10.84 (tax) = $49.95 total [~27.7% effective tax rate]
> Total Wine => $46.99 + 20.5% tax ($9.63) + $2.83 (750ml pro-rated Liter Tax) = $59.45 [~26.5% effective tax rate]

I can send you a copy of the spreadsheet from the old state website (3/2012) if you'd like.

As you can see, the effective tax rate actually went down in this case (yes, I understand the Liter tax has a greater effect the lower the retail price of the bottle is, but I typically buy in this price range so this is where the rubber meets the road for me).

What I see (as an industry outsider/regular consumer) is a $10 price increase from the store in the area with the greatest purchasing power and hence should be able to offer the best prices. Where did that extra $10 come from? I'm not trying to blame anybody, but it's just really hard right now as a consumer in this state especially when I see that tax rates aren't really to blame for the price increases.


Basically, prices increased dramatically overnight when the liquor business privatized.

NWBourbonDrinker
08-19-2013, 09:35
I understand and do not dispute your main point that taxes did not go up in the case of premium brands. I too am curious why the same bottle costs $10 more in Washington at the same retailer before taxes are applied.

The overall point though is that a money grabbing tax rate (one of the highest in the country) drives business out, lowers the overall sector revenue, and therefore lowers the amount of income for the government. It is simply wrong headed. The effect can be seen when crossing over to CA as the liquor warehouses straight across the border cater to Washington residents whom I saw loading up several boxes for their trip back home. A moderate tax rate would be a lot more productive and I bet it would bring in more tax revenue as well.

ChainWhip
08-19-2013, 10:25
You're right - the taxes still suck regardless ;-)

dementedavenger
08-20-2013, 14:56
The high cost coming from the distributors is most apparent when you go into a locally-owned store (Wine World, Emerald Spirits, Esquin, Downtown Spirits, etc.). Just some absolutely ridiculous pricing -- Kafkaesque almost.

Just remember, The Party Source usually runs a Cyber Monday deal for $15 flat shipping!

NWBourbonDrinker
08-20-2013, 17:37
What is this special at TPS? I have bought from them but always paid full shipping.

dementedavenger
08-20-2013, 17:47
What is this special at TPS? I have bought from them but always paid full shipping.

Last year on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, can't remember which one, they had $15.00, flat-rate shipping. I bought six 1.75L bottles and 9 750ml bottles and shipping was $15!

NWBourbonDrinker
08-20-2013, 20:27
Last year on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, can't remember which one, they had $15.00, flat-rate shipping. I bought six 1.75L bottles and 9 750ml bottles and shipping was $15!

Thanks I will have to watch this!

WhiskyRI
08-20-2013, 22:38
I travel to Seattle/Bellevue for work a couple of times a year. I'm frequently downtown and I've enjoyed visiting the Zig Zag café down the stairs from Pike's Place. Lots of good stuff on offer at reasonable prices. Plus once the staff know you actually know about whiskies they take care of you. Or at least that has been my experience on multiple visits. Ask for the whisky list and the "captain's list" as well. http://zigzagseattle.com/

ChainWhip
08-20-2013, 23:31
Theft problem since WA state got out of the retail business?

http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2013/08/liquor_theft_soars_in_washingt.html

Could be drivel put out by the Oregon LCB, but the numbers are interesting.

ChainWhip
08-20-2013, 23:49
I too am curious why the same bottle costs $10 more in Washington at the same retailer before taxes are applied.


Look at the same chain's prices for Booker's in CA vs WA - another telling sign IMO. Curious indeed...

NWBourbonDrinker
08-21-2013, 07:32
Look at the same chain's prices for Booker's in CA vs WA - another telling sign IMO. Curious indeed...

Exactly. 20% higher in WA for the same bottle. Booker's is not the exception either.

dementedavenger
11-04-2013, 10:14
Anybody able to score any of the BTAC or FR 125 that was distributed last week? Total Wine was the only retailer to get an allocation (I confirmed this with the distributor, Young's) and it's all gone if my calls to the stores are to believed.

ChainWhip
11-04-2013, 11:22
Anybody able to score any of the BTAC or FR 125 that was distributed last week? Total Wine was the only retailer to get an allocation (I confirmed this with the distributor, Young's) and it's all gone if my calls to the stores are to believed.

Thought BevMo was going to get some too but oh well... Maybe Total Wine was the only one to buy enough Skol or Rain Vodka. There's still some 4RSmBLE'13 floating around - I think you're right though, the smaller shops all said they weren't getting any BTAC.

DBM
11-04-2013, 20:47
One can only hope that retailers work will together and pressure the state or propose legislation to require fair distribution.

ChainWhip
11-05-2013, 10:47
PSA:

Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley will be at the Issaquah BevMo Thursday afternoon from 2-5pm.

ChainWhip
11-05-2013, 13:17
PSA:

Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley will be at the Issaquah BevMo Thursday afternoon from 2-5pm.

Mr. Wheatley will also be at the Bellevue, WA TotalWine from 3-5pm Wednesday.

Maybe I'll see some of you yahoos there!

MtnDew
11-05-2013, 19:05
PSA:

Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley will be at the Issaquah BevMo Thursday afternoon from 2-5pm.

The issaquah store is in my neighborhood, but sadly I work regular hours :(

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 14:29
Woodinville Whiskey (http://www.woodinvillewhiskeyco.com/) set to release Bourbon aged in standard sized barrels (almost 4yrs old):



We're excited to announce our 2013 special release date! On Saturday, December 7th, 2013 we will be releasing our "2013 Limited Collector's Edition Bourbon." This special release will be the first 5 barrels of whiskey we ever made at Woodinville Whiskey Co. We have 207 bottles of a bourbon that has rye as the flavoring grain, and 388 bottles of bourbon that has wheat as the flavoring grain. It has been aging in standard sized barrels for almost 4 years. This collector's edition bottle features a custom pewter label and custom display box. Doors will open at 7am and we'll have coffee and doughnuts for all at 6am. The retail price for a 750ml bottle including all tax is $149.95 with a limit of 1 bottle per person. Thanks and we look forward to seeing you!


https://scontent-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn2/p480x480/1454859_715777938450307_1587109523_n.jpg (https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=715777938450307&set=a.150487848312655.27785.150194771675296&type=1)

Photo from Woodinville Whiskey FB post https://www.facebook.com/woodinvillewhiskeyco

squire
11-06-2013, 14:34
Well, we do get a box and free doughnuts.

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 14:58
Well, we do get a box and free doughnuts.

Don't forget the coffee. This is Seattle after all ;-)

LostBottle
11-06-2013, 15:34
Woodinville Whiskey (http://www.woodinvillewhiskeyco.com/) set to release Bourbon aged in standard sized barrels (almost 4yrs old):

We're excited to announce our 2013 special release date! On Saturday, December 7th, 2013 we will be releasing our "2013 Limited Collector's Edition Bourbon." This special release will be the first 5 barrels of whiskey we ever made at Woodinville Whiskey Co. We have 207 bottles of a bourbon that has rye as the flavoring grain, and 388 bottles of bourbon that has wheat as the flavoring grain. It has been aging in standard sized barrels for almost 4 years. This collector's edition bottle features a custom pewter label and custom display box. Doors will open at 7am and we'll have coffee and doughnuts for all at 6am. The retail price for a 750ml bottle including all tax is $149.95 with a limit of 1 bottle per person. Thanks and we look forward to seeing you!



3yo whiskey for $149? Line forms at 6am? What a f*cking joke.

MyOldKyDram
11-06-2013, 15:37
If micros can't do it cheaper than that then they simply need not do it.

That being said, idiots will be queued up to get some.

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 15:39
I tasted some at the Bourbon Bash - it's good stuff but I don't feel like waking up early to stand in line to pay ~$185 for it. It stood toe to toe with the releases from the Majors but it obviously still has a ways to go price-wise.

I think it's a great milestone for them but I hope future releases are more reasonably priced.

This bottle is a collectors item to me.

smokinjoe
11-06-2013, 16:03
It stood toe to toe with the releases from the Majors...

That is a huge statement, CW. I take "toe-to-toe to the majors" to infer the Major's "equal". In "as good as". Also, I take that to mean it "tasted" like a bourbon? And, not a whiskey taste. Majors is a pretty big category. Can you shed some insight on what you mean? So you know where I'm coming from, I've tasted some micro bourbons that I could drink, and less that I could say I enjoy, and only one that resembled having the taste profile of bourbon as we know it. Please know i am not challenging your opinion, but rather, sincerely interested in your additional thoughts and comments. :toast:

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 16:19
Ok, let me say that I have no affiliation with WW Co. I had it at bourbon fest type thing that was hosted by a local steakhouse.

All the players were there and available for tasting:

BTAC
4R
Van Winkle
Willett
etc etc etc

So... When I say toe to toe with the majors, what I'm trying to say is it didn't taste like a micro Bourbon wannabe to me (I'm not a fan of the stuff the little guys have been putting out in general - there are exceptions ofcourse).

Even after sampling all the limited allocation bourbons & ryes, I was pleasantly surprised that the bottle Woodinville Whiskey produced from under the table was as good as it was (yes, it tasted like a bourbon). I'm not saying it was as good or better than the limited allocation whiskies I sampled but it was certainly on par or better than most of the standard bottlings from the Majors that day.

Is it worth $185 for a bottle? Not to me but they've come a long way from their micro-barreled whiskies (which I did not enjoy).

MyOldKyDram
11-06-2013, 16:24
So as drinkable as a $20 bottle then? :P

DBM
11-06-2013, 16:47
3yo whiskey for $149? Line forms at 6am? What a f*cking joke.
My initial thought was close to this, but I wouldn't have posted it verbatim. ;)

My feeling is that there is _less_ value for "first" when it comes to making a consumable product. I hope they learned a few things along the way to improve upon, which makes the "first edition" is not necessarily the best product. It's just new, young bourbon with no reputation.

I think Woodinville Whiskey Co. paid too much attention to Garrison Brothers' business model.

Cool label though.

wadewood
11-06-2013, 17:00
I think Woodinville Whiskey Co. paid too much attention to Garrison Brothers' business model.

Yep, the micros charge $60 to $75 for 2 year and less stuff so when they finally put out something with some decent age, they must think OMG we can get $175 for this. Good for them if they can get it; I'll pass.

smokinjoe
11-06-2013, 17:09
Ok, let me say that I have no affiliation with WW Co. I had it at bourbon fest type thing that was hosted by a local steakhouse.

All the players were there and available for tasting:

BTAC
4R
Van Winkle
Willett
etc etc etc

So... When I say toe to toe with the majors, what I'm trying to say is it didn't taste like a micro Bourbon wannabe to me (I'm not a fan of the stuff the little guys have been putting out in general - there are exceptions ofcourse).

Even after sampling all the limited allocation bourbons & ryes, I was pleasantly surprised that the bottle Woodinville Whiskey produced from under the table was as good as it was (yes, it tasted like a bourbon). I'm not saying it was as good or better than the limited allocation whiskies I sampled but it was certainly on par or better than most of the standard bottlings from the Majors that day.

Is it worth $185 for a bottle? Not to me but they've come a long way from their micro-barreled whiskies (which I did not enjoy).

Thanks, CW. I appreciate your comments. Even saying that it tasted like a bourbon is a monumental step for the micros in my opinion. Maybe, there is hope for that segment. I certainly wouldn't mind a taste at a Gazebo table some time in the future...:D Christian!!!!!!!!! Get your butt up there, and take one for the team!!!!! :lol:

MtnDew
11-06-2013, 17:53
Hmmm, I stood in line for both their first release (micro barrel bourbon and american whiskey) and for their second (rye) but missed the third (micro barrel mashbill number 9). If the bottle was more around the $100 mark I'd probably do it, mostly out of the desire to support our local businesses and encourage them to keep up the good work. I actually really enjoy their rye and personally find it worth the $50 a bottle. Sure, if I can get it Rittenhouse is nice but the WW rye drinks so much differently. I'm not a rye connoisseur (maybe obvious) so I can't compare this to the greats, but to me it's just a darn good drink and makes a great sazerac. I can hardly get Glenfiddich 12 for $50 in this state so the WW price is not bad.

All that being said, I'm still not going to get a $150 bottle of their first straight bourbon release ;)

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 18:04
Stopped by TotalWine tonight and had a chance to meet Harlen Wheatley - had a good chat and couple of interesting facts that were news to me (may not be news to you):

- Ancient Ancient Age 10yr is being discontinued
- Saz18 has about a year or so left before being switched over to BT distillate (will remain at current proof)
- Sazerac is getting into the China market in more ways than I thought... Apparently, Mao Tai is a part of that strategy
- BT is making 10x's the rye today than they were 4 years ago
- They liked the French Oak experiment enough to continue it (they have about 40 barrels purchased for this aging)

And something not news to me is that it's always fun to geek out about whisky - it was great to meet BT's Master Distiller in person and he was was gracious in answering my questions.

MtnDew
11-06-2013, 18:11
Stopped by TotalWine tonight and had a chance to meet Harlen Wheatley - had a good chat and couple of interesting facts that were news to me (may not be news to you):

- Ancient Ancient Age 10yr is being discontinued
- Saz18 has about a year or so left before being switched over to BT distillate (will remain at current proof)
- Sazerac is getting into the China market in more ways than I thought... Apparently, Mao Tai is a part of that strategy
- BT is making 10x's the rye today than they were 4 years ago
- They liked the French Oak experiment enough to continue it (they have about 40 barrels purchased for this aging)

And something not news to me is that it's always fun to geek out about bourbon - it was great to meet BT's Master Distiller in person and he was was gracious in answering my questions.

Will the Saz18 be the same age? Or is the BT whiskey younger?

As for the french oak thing, that must make you happy :D

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 18:12
Will the Saz18 be the same age? Or is the BT whiskey younger?

As for the french oak thing, that must make you happy :D

At least 18yrs old for the BT rye in the new Sazerac 18. And yes, I'm happy about the french oak thing being continued :-)

smknjoe
11-06-2013, 18:16
Thanks for the info Johnny.

Did you ask if they were going to bring back a 10yr. wheater?

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 20:30
Thanks for the info Johnny.

Did you ask if they were going to bring back a 10yr. wheater?

I didn't ask about that Joe...

He did say he couldn't remember if there's any old stock of Barton rye laying around.

ChainWhip
11-06-2013, 20:33
Anybody want to go to the SMWSA Extravaganza on Friday? (11/8)

MtnDew
11-06-2013, 21:20
Anybody want to go to the SMWSA Extravaganza on Friday? (11/8)

Sadly I am not, the funds are too low currently to make this work. I went last year and had a blast, one of my favorite drams was a 30 year Old Pulteney. One of the friends I went with won the "grand" prize in the raffle, which ended up being a box of Macanudo cigars so it worked out well. I assume your going? My wifes family are members of the Rainier club so we attend events somewhat regularly but this time the money is just not there.

MyOldKyDram
11-07-2013, 05:44
Stopped by TotalWine tonight and had a chance to meet Harlen Wheatley - had a good chat and couple of interesting facts that were news to me (may not be news to you):

- Ancient Ancient Age 10yr is being discontinued
- Saz18 has about a year or so left before being switched over to BT distillate (will remain at current proof)
- Sazerac is getting into the China market in more ways than I thought... Apparently, Mao Tai is a part of that strategy
- BT is making 10x's the rye today than they were 4 years ago
- They liked the French Oak experiment enough to continue it (they have about 40 barrels purchased for this aging)

And something not news to me is that it's always fun to geek out about whisky - it was great to meet BT's Master Distiller in person and he was was gracious in answering my questions.

Ugh. Oh well may grab one or two AAAs this wknd. If they're not already gone by then.

Good to know a timetable on the Saz18. Ditto obv getting that if and when ya can.

squire
11-07-2013, 06:25
French Oak eh? Well, I'm a broad minded kinda guy.

DBM
11-08-2013, 12:18
Anybody want to go to the SMWSA Extravaganza on Friday? (11/8)

Wish I could, but had conflicting plans a long time ago. Assuming you are going, I look forward to hearing your summary of the event. :)

ChainWhip
11-08-2013, 12:19
Wish I could, but had conflicting plans a long time ago. Assuming you are going, I look forward to hearing your summary of the event. :)

Actually, the wife booked childcare and date night so I'm doing something else too

DBM
11-08-2013, 12:24
Stopped by TotalWine tonight and had a chance to meet Harlen Wheatley.
I had a similar experience talking to Harlen at the Flat Iron Grill whisky paired dinner on Wednesday. Friendly guy to talk to, very knowledgeable and a great representative for the business. I also heard about AAA 10 year being discontinued, asked the same question about Saz18 and got the same answer, and got the impression that the Van Winkle products are more BT controlled than JVW advertises and others may want to believe.

He said this is his 3rd visit to the Seattle market. I hope it was successful enough that he makes the trip more often in the future. And now I want to meet Jim Rutledge! :)

DBM
12-28-2013, 03:09
It's official, the Weller shortage has come to Washington.

I was at Total Wine in Bellevue today and noticed the Weller 12 was missing from the shelf, and only 2 bottles of OWA. I asked an employee who looked up stock on Weller 12 and said that only 4 bottles were available in the entire state (Vancouver and Spokane), and only a little more of OWA. Both SKUs had an ETA of March 2014 for new stock, and Total Wine is surprisingly accurate with their ETA, at least in Washington State.

BevMo doesn't stock any Weller products and I haven't seen it at any other popular liquor stores, so as far as I know TW is our only (reasonable) source for Weller products. Glad I have a deep bunker on both!

ChainWhip
12-29-2013, 09:32
Clearview was blowing out WSR at a good price but their W12 price was on the ridiculous end of the pricing spectrum.

flahute
12-29-2013, 20:41
New Seattle area member here. I've noticed the same: the Weller products that most like to compare to the Van Winkle products are suddenly in short supply. They were in stock just a couple weeks ago, but suddenly are not any longer.

393foureyedfox
12-29-2013, 20:51
maybe the 'poor mans van winkle' story has caught on...

squire
12-29-2013, 20:55
I wouldn't be surprised at the stories out there.

DBM
12-29-2013, 21:11
Clearview was blowing out WSR at a good price but their W12 price was on the ridiculous end of the pricing spectrum.
I'm guessing you know why their pricing is like that...

dementedavenger
12-30-2013, 17:20
Seen on the shelves this afternoon at Met Market in Lower Queen Anne: Elijah Craig 21-Year Single Barrel for $231.77 and Parker's Heritage Collection #7 Promise of Hope for $153.44. Both prices include taxes.

Don't shoot the messenger!

DBM
12-30-2013, 22:11
Well, someone needs to be shot for those prices. :)

I like Met Market but they are pretty low on the totem pole so they pay significantly more than the tier 1 retailers. I'm not surprised, and props to them for stocking allocated products at all.

dementedavenger
02-07-2014, 15:47
I'm firing this up again... If anyone in the Seattle area is looking for ECBP (133.2-proof) drop me a message. I saw 6 on the shelf somewhere today. With taxes it's $60 and change.

dementedavenger
02-15-2014, 15:26
If anyone is interested, two bottles of Lot 40 (2012) showed up in the locked case at BevMo! in Ballard (that's where the ECBP was and it was gone as of Friday). They're $58.99 before taxes, so you're looking at ~$74.00. This is the first time I've seen Lot 40 on the shelves. I know it's a Canadian whiskey but quite a few bourbon/rye folks seem to think highly of it.

ChainWhip
02-15-2014, 15:55
Lot 40 @ TW in Bellevue too

flahute
02-15-2014, 18:23
I ended up ordering some from Caskers because it was a bit less expensive, especially without the tax.

ChainWhip
02-17-2014, 23:28
Westland will be releasing their first Peated Malt with a kick-off party @ the Vertigo Club in SoDo on 2014-02-22:

http://www.51eggs.com/wld_vertigo/img/WLD_JJ_1st_Peated_Splash_Content.png

http://www.51eggs.com/wld_vertigo/

ChainWhip
02-17-2014, 23:33
Dr. Bill Lumsden will be @ Wine World the U-District Tuesday night:

http://wineworldspirits.com/events/special-event-dr-bill-lumsden-introduces-the-glenmorangie-companta-this-tuesday-feb-18th/

DBM
02-17-2014, 23:42
Dr. Bill Lumsden will be @ Wine World the U-District Tuesday night:

http://wineworldspirits.com/events/special-event-dr-bill-lumsden-introduces-the-glenmorangie-companta-this-tuesday-feb-18th/
Sweet, thanks for the heads up! I hate traffic at 5:30pm but I will try to make this.

DBM
02-22-2014, 16:36
I know where a few bottles of Weller 12 are for a reasonable price (under $30) in the Seattle area. PM if you're interested.

ChainWhip
02-22-2014, 17:03
I know where a few bottles of Weller 12 are for a reasonable price (under $30) in the Seattle area. PM if you're interested.

Was just about to post the same thing.

dementedavenger
02-22-2014, 17:35
I saw more ECBP 134.2-proof on the shelf yesterday. It's ~$60 after taxes. PM me if you need to know.

flahute
02-22-2014, 17:55
I also found both of those today. The Weller 12 is going fast or is already gone at the two places I visited.

dementedavenger
02-23-2014, 07:30
I saw more ECBP 134.2-proof on the shelf yesterday. It's ~$60 after taxes. PM me if you need to know.

Sorry, meant the 133.2-proof, the 3rd batch.

ChainWhip
03-04-2014, 00:04
Green Spot has landed in the Seattle area - just in time for March!

dementedavenger
03-05-2014, 09:49
Green Spot has landed in the Seattle area - just in time for March!

Green Spot? What am I missing?

flahute
03-05-2014, 12:45
Green Spot? What am I missing?

Check the Irish whiskey thread over in the foreign whiskey section. This bottle is getting some love over there.

dementedavenger
03-05-2014, 14:45
Check the Irish whiskey thread over in the foreign whiskey section. This bottle is getting some love over there.

Irish Whiskey!? My lord, what will they think of next.

The big question for us is when does the Old Blowhard and Barterhouse hit town, lol.

flahute
03-05-2014, 16:55
Irish Whiskey!? My lord, what will they think of next.

The big question for us is when does the Old Blowhard and Barterhouse hit town, lol.

Inquiring minds are inquiring! I have not heard anything yet. Maybe it will rain down on us like ECBP?

dementedavenger
03-05-2014, 19:27
Inquiring minds are inquiring! I have not heard anything yet. Maybe it will rain down on us like ECBP?

ECBP has been cleared off the shelves near me. It's all about the Seahawks Maker's Mark next!

dementedavenger
03-07-2014, 18:59
Washingtontonians... PM me if you're interested in Old Blowhard and Barterhouse in WA.

DBM
03-07-2014, 21:11
Maker's Mark Seahawks bottles showed up at Total Wine today. They were all sold out in Bellevue and Lynnwood as of late morning (not sure of the other locations) but Bevmo is expecting some too. If you missed out on this round, keep in contact with your nearest Bevmo store. I have a feeling TW will be getting more too, I was surprised as how few bottles were received at each store after hearing how many cases TW was supposedly allocated.

dementedavenger
03-08-2014, 06:50
Maker's Mark Seahawks bottles showed up at Total Wine today. They were all sold out in Bellevue and Lynnwood as of late morning (not sure of the other locations) but Bevmo is expecting some too. If you missed out on this round, keep in contact with your nearest Bevmo store. I have a feeling TW will be getting more too, I was surprised as how few bottles were received at each store after hearing how many cases TW was supposedly allocated.

This will be the first and last bottle of MM I ever purchase and I'm only getting it because my wife wants it!

tkrinor
03-08-2014, 22:38
I could really use a Green Spot in Oregon if anyone on Southern WA wants to help a fella out.

flahute
03-08-2014, 22:51
I could really use a Green Spot in Oregon if anyone on Southern WA wants to help a fella out.

Don't know how close you are, but Total Wine in Vancouver, WA has it in stock.

dementedavenger
03-10-2014, 19:56
Central Market in Shoreline has a Four Roses Private Selection Barrel Strength. For the life of me I can't remember the recipe. It runs ~$78 after tax. They have a dedicated wine/liquor staff so if you're interested you can call. They've also got a metric ton of Whistlepig 10-year and 11-year sitting in the "high-end room" collecting dust at outrageous prices (someone got snookered by the distributor it seems).

tigerlam92
03-10-2014, 20:05
Deleted my post. :)

flahute
03-20-2014, 23:34
Bookers 25th has landed in the Northwest. I chanced across it outside Seattle so I don't know how wide the distribution is.

Pudsky
03-27-2014, 18:22
I have a buddy in Fall City looking for some ECBP. I was able to get a bottle and was telling him he may be able to find some off a shelf, bit he can't seem to. Does anyone know where any may be?

ChainWhip
03-27-2014, 20:03
I have a buddy in Fall City looking for some ECBP. I was able to get a bottle and was telling him he may be able to find some off a shelf, bit he can't seem to. Does anyone know where any may be?

I think they're gone at this point - he may have to wait for ECBP Batch 4

DBM
03-28-2014, 22:01
Yeah I think stock here is gone. The Seattle area is about 2-4 months behind most of the country for arrivals, so batch 4 is probably a late spring/early summer purchase.

michaelturtle1
03-29-2014, 20:38
Who is going to direct me to the good dusty hunting when I am out there in July? Thinking I will set my goal high, maybe a 2011 Bookers?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

DBM
03-29-2014, 21:06
A high goal would be something, anything, with literal dust on the bottle.

flahute
03-29-2014, 23:45
Who is going to direct me to the good dusty hunting when I am out there in July? Thinking I will set my goal high, maybe a 2011 Bookers?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I don't think there is much in the way of dusties in these parts with the switch over from state controlled to private last year.
Either way, let us know when you are here so we can meet up. Lot's of good places to get a drink.

TunnelTiger
03-30-2014, 08:20
I don't think there is much in the way of dusties in these parts with the switch over from state controlled to private last year.

Never heard of that happening before. How did it play out? Were individuals allowed to bid on/buy state stores or did large chains take over?

Did y'all see any change in pricing, offerings, etc?

tigerlam92
03-30-2014, 08:37
Seriously, if Michael is coming through your area, you should have an organized sweep before he passes by. He is just infamous for finding the dusties!! :)

Or accept the fact and invite him along so he can find your honey holes for you.

flahute
03-30-2014, 09:24
Never heard of that happening before. How did it play out? Were individuals allowed to bid on/buy state stores or did large chains take over?

Did y'all see any change in pricing, offerings, etc?

Some of the others from here can tell you a little better than me because I was not yet "into" this hobby then the way I am now. My understanding though is that individuals could buy the state stores, and some did, but that mostly the large chains took over.
Prices have indeed gone up quite a bit when including all the taxes at the various levels. Our out the door price is now among the highest in the country. (My timing for getting into this hobby was PERFCT).

ChainWhip
03-30-2014, 09:38
I'm of a mind to just sit back and watch the master at work ;)

Let's just say we've traded one monopoly for distributors that hold monopolies over labels & prices have really soared. We hear complaints about paying "BX" prices for aftermarket bottles in other parts of the country but we pay close to "BX" prices for retail.

flahute
03-30-2014, 15:48
I'm of a mind to just sit back and watch the master at work ;)

Let's just say we've traded one monopoly for distributors that hold monopolies over labels & prices have really soared. We hear complaints about paying "BX" prices for aftermarket bottles in other parts of the country but we pay close to "BX" prices for retail.

Agreed - watch and learn from the master. There are baggage limits to how much he can carry back so if he can find some honey holes there has to be some left for us, right?

DBM
03-30-2014, 20:19
I have only lived in one state, Washington, since I was able to legally purchase alcohol so I have very limited experience or knowledge with the concept of dusty hunting. The state liquor control board maintained tight control of all spirits inventory. If a bottle, even a single one, was not purchased after a short period of time, it was returned to a central distribution center in Seattle and combined with other stock to return to the distributor or sell to employees at cost. I know this because I did work at the LCB distribution center back in 2004-2005. Dusties simply didn't exist, it was bad business to have old stock.

The change to privatization in June 2012 was a complex arrangement that it too lengthy to describe here without writing a novel, but needless to say the private owners have only had control of their inventory since that time. Most paid $50,000 to over $1,000,000 just for the right to operate a formerly state run store, so they aren't the type of adult novelty/beverage/corner market stores that most other states have where inventory control is often not a top priority.

I have yet to see a Washington store, big city or small town, that has anything worth buying more than a few months old. Hopefully someone can prove me wrong, it would give me hope. :)

dementedavenger
03-31-2014, 12:38
Who is going to direct me to the good dusty hunting when I am out there in July? Thinking I will set my goal high, maybe a 2011 Bookers?

LOL, way to antagonize the crowd.

The old state stores were auctioned off but you only got the license to operate a store and all the fixtures (which is why so many private stores look like the old state stores). The spirits inventory was auctioned off in lots -- you can see the catalog here (http://www.liq.wa.gov/publications/Auctions/Inventory%20Auction/Surplus-Liquor-Auction-Catalog.pdf) -- and it was down to pretty basic stuff by the time it was all over. It's important to remember that the state stopped special ordering nearly six months before they ended retailing. There was nothing left on the shelf because of the bars/restaurants and folks like me, who hunted out even everyday brands like Buffalo Trace.

Most liquor in the Seattle is sold by major retailers (BevMo! and Total Wine) or grocery/warehouse stores (QFC, Fred Meyer and Costco). Some of the independents have nice selections but the pricing, more often than not, is outrageous. It's sad because it would be nice to support the little guy but it's hard to do so when you know you're overpaying by anywhere from 50% to 200%.

dementedavenger
04-02-2014, 12:56
BevMo! in Ballard has Bookers 25th for $124.99 before tax and a limit of one per customer. I believe that works out to $153.44 after tax. LOL.

dcbt
04-02-2014, 13:26
BevMo! in Ballard has Bookers 25th for $124.99 before tax and a limit of one per customer. I believe that works out to $153.44 after tax. LOL.

Wait, what? 22.75% sales tax?

flahute
04-02-2014, 18:50
Wait, what? 22.75% sales tax?

That's right - not to mention the higher price to begin with due to hidden taxes at the distributor end that get passed on to us via the sticker price.

ChainWhip
04-02-2014, 20:31
Wait, what? 22.75% sales tax?

WA State... Where we get BX'd before BX was BX - yessiree Gov'ner, I'll drop my soap again and have another thank you very much.

dementedavenger
05-02-2014, 18:25
FYI: QFC in U-Village has Barterhouse, Old Blowhard, WT101 Rye (1L), WT Forgiven, Rittenhouse, Sazerac and Bowman Brothers, among others.

Verax
05-03-2014, 04:02
FYI: QFC in U-Village has Barterhouse, Old Blowhard, WT101 Rye (1L), WT Forgiven, Rittenhouse, Sazerac and Bowman Brothers, among others.

Thanks for the heads up, I'll be headed that way today. :)

WhiskyRI
05-06-2014, 13:49
All is not bad however - I've been able to buy Willett Family Estate Single Barrel Bourbon in WA when I've traveled there on business. It was at a store in Redmond - can't remember the name. Willett isn't even distributed in RI, and just about impossible to do anywhere in the Northeast any more. And yes it was "expensive" but it was so tasty so I felt like it was worth it.

ChainWhip
05-06-2014, 14:40
All is not bad however - I've been able to buy Willett Family Estate Single Barrel Bourbon in WA when I've traveled there on business. It was at a store in Redmond - can't remember the name. Willett isn't even distributed in RI, and just about impossible to do anywhere in the Northeast any more. And yes it was "expensive" but it was so tasty so I felt like it was worth it.

Those 775 & 781 Willetts were great - some of the best bourbons I've had in the last two years... But there's no forthcoming cool bottlings like that in the near future I fear. If the store you're talking about is the one in old Redmond, that closed it's doors late last year :-(

DBM
06-06-2014, 09:31
Regular ETL, Barterhouse and one bottle of ECBP batch 4 at TW Bellevue.

DBM
07-14-2014, 00:06
Has anyone seen ECBP batch 5 in the state? Just curious if distribution has made it here.

ChainWhip
07-14-2014, 09:02
Has anyone seen ECBP batch 5 in the state? Just curious if distribution has made it here.

Come & gone - I was too slow this time around... Maybe a few more cases will pop up like batch 3.

Interesting a batch 4 is there... Maybe somebody refunded one.

flahute
07-14-2014, 18:38
Has anyone seen ECBP batch 5 in the state? Just curious if distribution has made it here.
It showed up briefly at Total Wine. Didn't last long. Haven't looked anywhere else.

michaelturtle1
08-07-2014, 15:24
The two I saw in Seattle were batch 4

dementedavenger
08-08-2014, 16:28
Pleasantly surprised to see Heaven Hill 6YO BIB at QFC in UVillage today. Frank, the store manager, is very responsive to requests (he added OGD 114 a few months ago) and I'm pretty sure someone on here requested he carry this. It's twice the price as it is in Kentucky but it's a great value bourbon for WA.

393foureyedfox
08-08-2014, 16:56
ya know, even at $20-25, id still have it all the time. congrats on the find!

ChainWhip
08-12-2014, 19:37
So just an FYI. Clearview's prices are sans 17% excise tax.

DBM
08-14-2014, 22:52
So just an FYI. Clearview's prices are sans 17% excise tax.
How? I know there has been legislation tossed around to reduce taxes paid for former state run stores (which Clearview technically is) butnothing has passed that I'm aware of. Clearview did successfully argue that the 17% excise tax amount can't be included in the amount subject to the 20.5% sales tax (it's illegal to tax a tax) which lowered prices a little, but this is breaking news to me.

ChainWhip
08-14-2014, 22:54
How? I know there has been legislation tossed around to reduce taxes paid for former state run stores (which Clearview technically is) butnothing has passed that I'm aware of. Clearview did successfully argue that the 17% excise tax amount can't be included in the amount subject to the 20.5% sales tax (it's illegal to tax a tax) which lowered prices a little, but this is breaking news to me.
Just an FYI for peeps shopping there. Their POS can't code for the 17% properly or something like that but the 20.5% is still tacked on top of retail+17%

CaptainQ
08-19-2014, 13:16
If anyone in WA is still waiting for the Elmer T. Lee Commemorative bottling to hit store shelves, your wait is over......A big FU to Youngs Market for only selling it to bars and/or restaurants. They even had the balls to deny receiving any, but Buffalo Trace says otherwise. Screwed again.:hot: I was really looking forward to getting a bottle of this to place alongside my 90th Birthday and 15 year SB bottlings.

Sorry for the rant, but I am so pissed off right now.

DBM
08-19-2014, 15:57
The unfortunate truth is that this happens with most every distributor in WA, and likely in every state. Deception, lying, half-truths and every slimy sales tactic imaginable. I think this style of business is prospering because of our recent transition from a control state to a private market; distributors are abusing the system in every way imaginable to protect their turf (and revenue, and profit margin). It's a shady industry in general, but some distributors take it to the extreme.

I recently went to Oregon and had a great experience at the state stores. I will say it - I miss the state monopoly. The retailer (state) could keep the distributors in check, now distributors are running loose with no enforcement.

ChainWhip
08-26-2014, 19:49
If anyone in WA is still waiting for the Elmer T. Lee Commemorative bottling to hit store shelves, your wait is over......A big FU to Youngs Market for only selling it to bars and/or restaurants. They even had the balls to deny receiving any, but Buffalo Trace says otherwise. Screwed again.:hot: I was really looking forward to getting a bottle of this to place alongside my 90th Birthday and 15 year SB bottlings.

Sorry for the rant, but I am so pissed off right now.


The unfortunate truth is that this happens with most every distributor in WA, and likely in every state. Deception, lying, half-truths and every slimy sales tactic imaginable. I think this style of business is prospering because of our recent transition from a control state to a private market; distributors are abusing the system in every way imaginable to protect their turf (and revenue, and profit margin). It's a shady industry in general, but some distributors take it to the extreme.

I recently went to Oregon and had a great experience at the state stores. I will say it - I miss the state monopoly. The retailer (state) could keep the distributors in check, now distributors are running loose with no enforcement.
This is the liquor "business" we are talking about here so...

Are you still looking for an ETL death bottle Dave?

CaptainQ
09-04-2014, 14:27
This is the liquor "business" we are talking about here so...

Are you still looking for an ETL death bottle Dave?

Thanks Johnny, but I found some out of state.

suntour
09-06-2014, 23:16
Anybody know if there's a liquor store in Redmond that has HH 6 BIB? I have a friend coming from there who would bring some but not if it's not in his backyard.

ChainWhip
09-06-2014, 23:19
Anybody know if there's a liquor store in Redmond that has HH 6 BIB? I have a friend coming from there who would bring some but not if it's not in his backyard.
PM me - I know the QFC @ U-Village had them last time I was there but haven't been to any local stores in a while...