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  1. #1
    Connoisseur
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    Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Yesterday I took a trip across the border and down to Maryland to see what a REAL liquor store looks like inside. I was blown away. The horrible state-controlled stores we have around here were nothing compared to what I walked into down in Maryland. Quadruple the selection and MUCH cheaper! That got me wondering- if one of the "state stores" (term us PA people use for our liquor stores) does not have something in stock or on their crappy website, how do I get it outside of going down to Maryland? I had asked once about special ordering and was told "We don't and can't do that." Is this true? Am I stuck having to go to Maryland everytime I want fairly priced whiskey and a good selection?

  2. #2
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    If the item is not in the PA system you will not be able to get it legally in PA. Even if the item is in the system they might mandate that you buy 6 or 12 of them to fill the SLO (Special Liquor Order). Now if what you want is at another store in the PLCB District (usually the county but not always) you can have it sent to your local store for free. That free part is going to change soon though as the PLCB is going to charge UPS shipping PLUS some, at this time, undetermined extra charge to send it to your local store. Just another way that the PLCB takes care of it's customers.

    Personally, I mail order and drive into MD all the time. Screw the state store.
    Illuminati in training

  3. #3
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Dang. It just keeps getting better. I went to Maryland over the weekend and was blown away by the selection and prices they have. I heard it was illegal to go down there and buy stuff and bring it back here though. Is that true?

  4. #4
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    It is, but don't let that stop you. It is just as illegal for Marylanders to come up here and buy booze too but you don't see PA trying to stop that. In fact they put up 7 outlet stores on the border that offer better prices on some things to keep people from going to other states and to draw customers across the border. Of course, that means that they screw the rest of the state because you can't get those prices at your local state store and so have to pay more.
    Illuminati in training

  5. #5
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Awesome. I did buy a few items down there in Maryland and the lady sort of gave me a nasty look when I checked out. I guess that's why. So how do they catch you if you take stuff over the border then?

  6. #6
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    At one time they used to have PA Liquor Enforcement Officers park near the border and watch the out of state liquor stores and had plain clothes cops in the parking lots of said stores but that has stopped for the past few years. Now about the only way they can catch you is if you are stopped for some other violation and have an excessive amount of booze in your car. 2 or 3 botles I wouldn't worry about but 2 or 3 cases probably isn't going to be good.
    Illuminati in training

  7. #7
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Wow. So they actually spied on PA residents down in Maryland? Jeez, you know your state has a problem when they have to resort to that! One other thing that stood out to me was the fact that the people in the liquor store down there in Maryland were not only friendly, but they knew what they were talking about. The employees at the state stores around here usually act like I'm an interruption in their day. Better prices, better selection, and better people. Sounds like a winning combo for me!

  8. #8
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    IL
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Very illustrative and informative take on the contrast between the two systems..........


    I am glad that I don't have to deal with "state stores" and I hope the idea does not start to look appealing....is there any data to show whether control states generate more alcohol tax revenue vs non-control? The cost of running state stores has to be considered.

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/taxdata/show/245.html
    MD is much lower on alcohol sales tax.

    I wonder if DUI rates etc are statistically different (regarding the minumum purchase sizes etc).

    http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-dr...tatistics.html

    State Total Fatalities Alcohol-Related Fatalities Number Percent

    Pennsylvania 1,517 556 37%
    Maryland 651 235 36%

    Hmmm....Population, Maryland 5,633,597 - Jul 2008
    Population, Pennsylvania 12,448,279 - Jul 2008

    So, about double the population and about double the number but about the same rate...I don't see a clear distinction.

    And for good measure....very open LA....a higher rate.

    Louisiana 982 425 43%
    Population, Louisiana 4,410,796 - Jul 2008
    Last edited by Jono; 10-26-2009 at 08:50.

  9. #9
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    Alcohol fatality rates not better than the national average http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-dr...tatistics.html

    PA is 28th (Statistically average) in DUI rates.
    http://oas.samhsa.gov/2k8/stateDUI/press.htm#Tab.

    Also, the PLCB is the largest single liquor buyer in the world (which it is) then why don't Pennsylvanians have the best prices across the board? it seems to work for Walmart. They want to run it like a business then be more like Walmart.

    It has been estimated that if PA was a non-control state there would be 1800+ liquor stores in the state instead of the 618 we now have.

    A big bragging point that the PLCB has is how they turned in 475 Million back to the state last year. What they don't say is that Rent, Utilities, Salaries, Pensions and paying for the PLCB itself comes out of that. A 1.5 Billion dollar business made 55 Million and its a MONOPOLY!
    http://www.lcb.state.pa.us/webapp/Ab...FY_2008-09.pdf

    A good read about why PA should get out of the Liquor business:
    http://reason.org/files/7f7554148c4e...43e7d49020.pdf
    Illuminati in training

  10. #10
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Trying to get decent whiskey in PA.

    I look at it this way- The state of PA owns all the liquor stores in PA and controls all alcohol coming in to the state. There is no competition- therefore, that means there is no incentive to be competitive (examples: lower prices, better customer service, larger variety,...) and there is no want for them to help a consumer with their needs. Then take a state that has private ownership of their liquor stores. All the stores HAVE TO compete to stay alive. They must offer better service, more selection, and lower prices than their competitor or they go out of business. It's a total win for the customer!

 

 

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