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  1. #1
    Taster
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    Posts
    56

    I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    I'm sitting here at 1:35 with a glass of Overholt (although my diet forbids it!) and can't help but think when I read some posts here that you bourbonhunters are very fortunate. Sweden, not allowing private shops, must be the country the bourbongods forgot.

    Here is what we can get, and this is ALL that is available: (approximate/equivalent prices in parantheses)

    Blanton's Gold ($ 120)
    Blanton's Single Barrel Bourbon ($ 60)
    Buffalo Trace ($ 50)
    Evan Williams Single Barrel 1994 ($ 85)
    Four Roses Bourbon ($ 25)
    Four Roses Bourbon 35 ml ($ 18)
    Jack Daniel's ($ 35)
    Jack Daniel's 350 ml ($ 23)
    Jim Beam Bourbon ($ 33)
    Jim Beam Bourbon35 ml ($ 20)
    Jim Beam Black 8 Years ($ 36)
    McCarthy's Oregon Single Malt Whiskey ($ 90)
    Old Potrero Single Malt Straight Rye Whiskey ($ 90)
    Rittenhouse Straight Rye ($ 35)
    Seagram's Seven Crown Blended Whiskey ($ 32)
    Seagram's Seven Crown Blended Whiskey 35 ml ($ 21)
    Wild Turkey Straight Rye Whiskey ($ 49)
    WL Weller 12 Years ($ 53)


    Appauling, isn't it? So, fellow American drinkers, I hope this will give you a sense of perspective.

    Just thinking about this gives me the blues. A perfect opportunity to "bourbonize" myself into oblivion, eh?

    Cheers!

    /Robert

  2. #2
    Administrator in exile
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    3,904

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    I'd probably still pay $53 for the Weller 12yo

    Sorry about your circumstances, but you can get a few things we can't here, like the Blanton's Gold. I can't get Rittenhouse Rye and I live in KY

  3. #3
    Taster
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    Posts
    56

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    Hi Jeff,

    Yes, as I understand it some whiskies are not available in some states and that is a shame. WHen I was in the US this summer I lived primarily in Virginia. There they did not have X bourbon, so I went to nearby Maryland where they had it, and in Maryland they did not have Y bourbon, so I went to DC. (lived very close to the state lines, as you may have guessed ) So I see your problem, too.

    BTW, I love the quote in your signature.

  4. #4
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Chicago SW 'burbs
    Posts
    1,178

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    I'm sitting here at 1:35 with a glass of Overholt (although my diet forbids it!) and can't help but think when I read some posts here that you bourbonhunters are very fortunate. Sweden, not allowing private shops, must be the country the bourbongods forgot.

    (outlandish prices snipped)


    Ow. Owww! <font color="red">OWWWWWWWWWW!</font>

    I can't help but wonder how much of that is the cost of shipping it overseas, and how much of that is taxes?

    I've noticed that US prices for Scotch are often as good or better than UK prices. And yet, Americans are always moaning about taxation!

    Of course, we have our own troubles, with a patchwork of differing liquor laws for each state, and sometimes with each county, not to mention each city!

    Ohio seems to be a whisky wasteland. Michigan is also, to a lesser extent, while Illinois is fairly blessed by comparison. Just don't get me started on the corruption in Illinois politics, though.

    That being said, sometimes even a "control" state (where the state government controls liquor sales at the wholesale or even retail level) can have some surprising finds. I found some Cadenhead's 150th anniversary bottlings of Port Ellen in Michigan, where I would have never expected them. FYI, Michigan is state-controlled at the wholesale level, but retail sales are at private stores.

  5. #5
    Taster
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    Posts
    56

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    Ow. Owww! <font color="red">OWWWWWWWWWW!</font>

    I can't help but wonder how much of that is the cost of shipping it overseas, and how much of that is taxes?
    Again, the taxes in America is a fart in space compared to ours in Sweden . 70 cl bottles are the largest sold here, and for every 1 liter of alcohol sold, above that is 196 SEK, which equals US $ 28. In other words, the $ 28 is itax only ABOVE the price for the product. One bottle of Absolut Vodka, our gift to the world, costs the equivalent of US $ some $ 35 here. The actual cost for the product is almost nothing considering the vast volumes of Absolut produced.

    Of course, we have our own troubles, with a patchwork of differing liquor laws for each state, and sometimes with each county, not to mention each city!

    What are the reasons for this, really? I'm not to up-to-date with the situation so it may seem like a dumb question... The rules seem to vary in the extreme between states. Is Kentucky the best state to live in as far as availability is concerned?

    Just don't get me started on the corruption in Illinois politics, though.
    Hey, come on now, I'm interested!

    Greets,

    Robert (in a better mood now since you made me get some perspective! )

  6. #6
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Chicago SW 'burbs
    Posts
    1,178

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    and for every 1 liter of alcohol sold, above that is 196 SEK, which equals US $ 28. In other words, the $ 28 is itax only ABOVE the price for the product.
    EEEEEEK! Believe me, I won't be complaining about alcohol taxation here! Not to mention, you're probably paying VAT on top of that.

    Of course, we have our own troubles, with a patchwork of differing liquor laws for each state, and sometimes with each county, not to mention each city!

    What are the reasons for this, really? I'm not to up-to-date with the situation so it may seem like a dumb question... The rules seem to vary in the extreme between states.
    I think a lot of that is a legacy of our infamous "experiment" known as Prohibition. When Prohibition was lifted by the Twenty-first Amendment to our Constitution, the states were given great latitude to regulate the sale and importation (even from other states) of alcohol.

    Is Kentucky the best state to live in as far as availability is concerned?
    I'm not really sure. For instance, Rittenhouse Rye doesn't seem to be available in Kentucky, even though it's distilled there. Kentucky also has "dry" counties where alcohol sales are still prohibited to this day. In Illinois, there are a few cities, and some neighborhoods within the City of Chicago that are dry, but not whole counties.

    (An aside: The US system of government is hierarchical: Federal -> State -> County -> Municipal. Powers that are not reserved for a higher level are delegated to the next lower level.)

    Just don't get me started on the corruption in Illinois politics, though.
    Hey, come on now, I'm interested!
    Here's an example. Note that a governor is essentially the "president" of an individual state.

    And then, of course, the City of Chicago is a world of corruption unto itself.

    Greetings from Mokena (about 48 km from downtown Chicago).

  7. #7
    Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Pelham, AL
    Posts
    3,894

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    We used to have a member who lived in Kansas and it sounded like he could get just about anything made. And at dirt cheap prices, too.

    Tim

  8. #8
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Japan, (American)
    Posts
    1,673

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    Hi Tim,
    Now, who do I know in Kansas...
    Ed

  9. #9
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Oct 1999
    Location
    Sweden
    Posts
    867

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    I just have to add here that Robert´s list does not include special order items.

    These articles can seldom be found on the shelves but if you ask for them they´ll get it for you, usually within one week.

    Among these are the JB small batch selection, JD single barrel, EC 12 and many BT and Van Winkle bottlings. The prices here are murderous too, I´m afraid.

    A sad (and unexpected) loss recently was Woodford reserve. It has disappeared completely. Also, Maker´s red can now only be ordered as a 1000 ml bottle. How weird!

  10. #10
    Bourbonian of the Year 2010 and Guru
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Kentucky!
    Posts
    4,749

    Re: I envy Americans for your range of bourbons...

    I asked a guy that works for Labot & Graham once, and he said that anywhere in the world, if you can get Jack Daniels, you can get Woodford Reserve.

    Also I live in Kentucky(and part of the year in Louisiana), and I still have to make occasional trips to Chicago, IL to pick up bottles of bourbon and rye-most notably Rittenhouse Rye.

 

 

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