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View Full Version : Surprising Selection at Rite-Aid



PhilsFan
06-19-2008, 09:12
Inspired by Chuck Cowdery's recent posting of a drug store liquor ad, I thought I'd check out the Rite-Aid Pharmacy about 2 miles from my home.

I was pleasantly surprised by the selection of Bourbon...they had Blanton's, KC, WT, Ezra Brooks and lots more in a good variety of price ranges. They had AAA 10 yr and VOB bib at the best price I've seen it,
$10.49, which is about a dollar lower than the current price of VOB bib at Liquor Barn.

Certainly they don't have the selection of a Liquor Barn or a Party Outlet,
but it's a good selection at what seems like pretty fair prices, so if there's a Rite-Aid in your area that sells liquor, it's worth checking out.

-Joe

thedrivel
06-19-2008, 12:29
I go to the Rite Aid by my house all the time. It's the one at Gardiner Lane.

bluesbassdad
06-19-2008, 13:31
"Surprising" indeed! Especially to this former California resident (until 2004). In Long Beach our nearby Rite-Aid had Wild Turkey, Jim Beam and Jack Daniel's, and it went downhill from there.

On the plus side they often ran specials on WT 101 at $12.99 for 750 ml.

Your [Kentucky] Rite-Aid has better selection than my local Liquor Barn here in Outback, AZ. It's not their fault; it's just demographics. Three years ago I had them order Kentucky Spirit for me. The proprietor decided to get two more bottles for the shelf. It took a year and half for them to disappear. (At a price of $55 I found it easy to resist.)

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

cowdery
06-19-2008, 15:14
God Bless Kentucky.

When I lived there I lived in the Crescent Hill neighborhood. The closest liquor store was a tiny storefront on Brownsboro Road. Not sure if it's still there or not, and I'm sure it has changed, but 30 years ago it had this amazing bourbon selection, but that's Kentucky. As I have said many times, the worst bar or liquor store in Kentucky has a better selection of bourbons than the best bar or liquor store anywhere else.

callmeox
06-19-2008, 15:39
I got my first bottle of Four Roses Single Barrel at a CVS in Ashland, Kentucky in August '07 for the obscene price of 28 bucks. I wish I had gotten a few more. I wasn't educated enough to look at any other labels while I was there, but I imagine that I would drop a few more bucks there if I was visiting in August of '08 instead.

Josh
06-19-2008, 16:26
When I was in grad school the best source for liquor & microbrews in town was the Phar-Mor. It always sold at state min. prices too, unlike the liquor stores in town.

I learned you always throroughly investigate any possible source of good booze in town. You never know what you might find even at a Drug or Grocery store!

cowdery
06-20-2008, 16:11
Remember that during Prohibition, the pharmacy was the only place that could sell liquor legally. It was a good business and after Repeal, many drug stores decided to stay in the business. This was long before places like grocery stores, where legal, got into it.

Today it varies. Walgreens, for example, once sold liquor chain wide but now sells it in only a few stores. I don't know if there are any states where drug stores still have any kind of legislated advantage over other types of licensees.

In general, and depending on your age and what state you're in, you probably remember buying liquor in drug stores in the past, but rarely do so today.

bluesbassdad
06-20-2008, 18:12
Chuck,

Here in Yavapai County, Arizona one, very old-fashioned Walgreen's in nearby Prescott sells liquor. I even picked up a bottle of Russell's Reserve there back in 2005. However, the brand new store in Chino Valley (our only drug store) does not.

I assume the situation is similar to that of the cats-and-dogs brands of bourbon. They keep at it where it exists and makes money but won't invest in it for the future.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

cowdery
06-20-2008, 19:41
I assume the situation is similar to that of the cats-and-dogs brands of bourbon. They keep at it where it exists and makes money but won't invest in it for the future.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

That's the gist. It was even characterized to me more as, "we're getting out of it except where we can't afford to." Based on that policy, I'm guessing the Prescott store does a hell of a business.

bluesbassdad
06-21-2008, 14:03
That's the gist. It was even characterized to me more as, "we're getting out of it except where we can't afford to." Based on that policy, I'm guessing the Prescott store does a hell of a business.

I'm guessing the same thing. I also have a guess as to why. This area reminds me of my small-town upbringing in some ways. In my youth it was common to hear self-righteous folks mention that they'd seen so-and-so's car at a drinking establishment. I suppose others were sensitive to that sort of thing. I can imagine that someone who wouldn't park in front of a Liquor Barn (really more of a hut than a barn -- they exist in Prescott, Prescott Valley and here in Chino Valley) might pick up a bottle of liquor in a Walgreen's, where only he and the store clerk know the secret.

I used to think that drive-through windows existed for the same reason. However, the one at our Liquor Barn is on the street side of the building.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

Josh
06-23-2008, 13:42
I don't know if there are any states where drug stores still have any kind of legislated advantage over other types of licensees.

In Indiana, at least until I moved away, Pharmacies can sell liquor basically off the shelves, as liquor stores can (hence Phar-Mor). Grocery or big discount stores can only sell liquor if it is seperate from the rest of the merchandise.

For example, at the Meijer I used to frequent on E 96th in Indianapolis, there was/is a seperate liquor store in the back where you have to go to buy anything other than beer, wine, cider or "malt beverages". It has its own hours and its own check-out. They put it in a brown paper bag and staple the receipt to the bag. You may then resume shopping for other items. It's kind of a pain.

cowdery
06-24-2008, 19:23
That's exactly what I'm talking about. That's a residue of Prohibition.

razerburnt
06-25-2008, 05:37
The Kroger grocerys in my area in IN sell liquor right off the shelves. you pay for it at the checkout with the rest of you stuff.

Randy

ILLfarmboy
06-25-2008, 06:13
In Indiana, at least until I moved away, Pharmacies can sell liquor basically off the shelves, as liquor stores can (hence Phar-Mor). Grocery or big discount stores can only sell liquor if it is seperate from the rest of the merchandise.

For example, at the Meijer I used to frequent on E 96th in Indianapolis, there was/is a seperate liquor store in the back where you have to go to buy anything other than beer, wine, cider or "malt beverages". It has its own hours and its own check-out. They put it in a brown paper bag and staple the receipt to the bag. You may then resume shopping for other items. It's kind of a pain.

I belive the neo-prohibitionist want to put alcohol purveyors on the same level as pornographers and by extention, equate the purchase of alcohol with porn.

Josh
06-25-2008, 13:38
I belive the neo-prohibitionist want to put alcohol purveyors on the same level as pornographers and by extention, equate the purchase of alcohol with porn.


The Kroger grocerys in my area in IN sell liquor right off the shelves. you pay for it at the checkout with the rest of you stuff.

That's interesting. Maybe the seperate liquor store thing has been repealed or maybe it was a county-by-county thing or they may just let it slide in the Louisville metro area where you are, razer.

It's interesting that you should mention porn, ILLfarmboy, because while it is (or was) illegal in Indiana to sell milk or even soft drinks at a liquor store, they were perfectly able to sell porn. I remember going to a dingy, dimly lit liquor store in Anderson and having to walk past a big rack (no pun intended) of porn mags right by the check-out. The neo-prohibitionist sentiment you mention was very evident!

ThomasH
06-25-2008, 17:33
In Florida, grocery store chains Kash and Karry and Albertons as well as most Walgreens drug stores sell alcohol, but the area that sells the alcohol is not in but next to the regular store and has a seperate entrance!

Thomas

cowdery
06-26-2008, 11:39
The United States is supposed to be a national market but beverage alcohol is the exception. The states have very broad latitude on how they regulate its sale and each state is different. In New York, for example, liquor stores can't sell anything that doesn't have alcohol in it. They can't sell mixers, they can't sell glasses, they can't even sell cork screws. They can't sell porn.

As for the separate store v. integrated with the rest of the store, I think in some states the requirements are such that some stores choose to abide by them by creating a separate space, while other stores feel they can accommodate those rules in other ways. In that sense, then, it's the retailer's choice. They have to follow the rules, but exactly how they do it is up to them.

ThomasH
06-26-2008, 12:16
In Florida, many of the grocery stores and Walgreens are open until midnight or even 24 hours. It might be that liquor stores are supposed to close at a certain time and it is easier to abide by these rules if the liquor store is seperate from the regular store!

Thomas

cas
06-26-2008, 12:46
TIn New York, for example, liquor stores can't sell anything that doesn't have alcohol in it. They can't sell mixers, they can't sell glasses, they can't even sell cork screws. They can't sell porn.


I grew up in NY and this is my recollection too. But I was just back there last week and they had wine bottle stoppers and similar paraphernalia for sale at Viscount in Fishkill, NY.

I took a 2 credit class in wines and spirits my senior year and I remember learning that in NY it was illegal to call a bar a saloon.
Craig

ILLfarmboy
06-27-2008, 11:29
In Florida, many of the grocery stores and Walgreens are open until midnight or even 24 hours. It might be that liquor stores are supposed to close at a certain time and it is easier to abide by these rules if the liquor store is seperate from the regular store!

Thomas

I have noticed a trend when it comes to recently built big super markets. All of the new Hy-Vees around here have their own "wine and spirits" section that can be closed off. You don't have to actually pay for your purchase at the checkout in that section, you can put it in your cart and continue shopping and check out at one of the main checkouts at the front of the store. Oddly, the "wine and spirits sections" do usually close at eleven or twelve PM. I'm a night owl and when I don't have to work the next day, I don't mind grocery shopping later in the evening, sometimes leaving the house at nine or ten.

craigthom
06-27-2008, 16:11
All those states are better than Georgia. I haven't lived there in twenty years, so things may have gotten better, but probably not much.

Liquor could only be sold in liquor stores.

Liquor prices could not be advertised even seen from outside the store.

Liquor stores were separate from beer and wine stores. This may have changed, but I don't think it has. There were separate business names and licensees, even when it looked as if all this was happening in the same store and all the products were purchased at the same register.

If you look closely at a liquor store in Georgia that also sells beer and wine you'll notice that the liquor is on a different side or in a different room. There will be a door or divider between the sides. It's probably permanently open. The divider may be pushed into a wall, but you should see the track for it in the ceiling.