. . . so why doesn't Sam's, I wonder?
Even though I have what could easily turn out to be a lifetime supply of bourbon, I just couldn't shake a feeling of anxiety due to the apparent lack of a local source for some of my favorites. (I emphasize the word "apparent", but more on that later.) Sam's, my primary out-of-state supplier when I lived in CA, has declined to ship to me here in AZ. Binny's is a "maybe".
While perusing the Hi Time website last week, on a whim I place a small order. (I had been told they would ship to AZ, but considering the refusal by Sam's, I figured I had been misinformed by an unknowledgeable employee at Hi Time.)
Two days later my phone rang. When the caller identified himself as Russ(?) from Hi Time, I thought I knew what was coming ("I'm sorry Mr. Morefield, but we can't ship to . . .") I was wrong. He was calling to say that Kentucky Spirit was temporarily out of stock and to ask whether to hold up the shipment. My small order would be shipped, one way or the other.
Well, it started out as a small order -- but that was before I casually asked whether he had any bourbon or rye bottlings in stock that were not listed on the website. "You have Stagg? And Sazerac rye? OMG!" At that point I didn't dare ask whether he just happened to have Weller 19 y/o.
The shipment arrived the day before yesterday. My anxiety level has now dropped significantly. (I'm always anxious about something. )
In the meantime I stopped into the single dedicated spirits outlet in my town (to pick up JB Black -- an advertised Manager's Special) and mentioned my hankering for Kentucky Spirit. The proprietor had never heard of it (or Russell's Reserve), but she was happy to check with the distributor. A few days later she called to say it was available -- at a price of $47, plus AZ sales tax -- $51 total. I flinched at the price, but I felt I had to reward her initiative. I asked her to order it.
Yesterday I drove through freshly fallen snow to pick it up. To my surprise they weren't holding it for me; it was on the shelf -- along with a second bottle. Either I've helped someone else expand his/her bourbon horizons, or else I might get to pick up the second bottle as a Manager's Special in a few months.
Small-town life isn't bad; it just requires a few adjustments.