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  1. #71
    Bourbonian of the Year 2006
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    Rockland County, NY
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    BT Experiment was finished before the sale

    IMHO, BT had all the info they needed when their panel finished tasting.

    I think they were generous in deciding to distribute the remainder of the whiskey in a barrel.

    It has to be pretty expensive to do single barrel (and I do mean only one) releases.

    The price is high, but fair and I don't think they make much.

    I mean, they're not establishing a market now for something they may decide to put into production, that won't be available for 16 years.

    Seems to me, they could easily have put aside a gallon or two in the lab and dumped the rest with a lot less trouble. I respect that somebody there knows that folks like us would appreciate a shot of something different, whether it be good, bad or four grain.
    Colonel Ed
    Bourbonian of the Year 2006

    Comissioned by Paul Patton, 1999

    "It ain't the booze that brings me in here, it's the solace it distills"

  2. #72
    Connoisseur
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    Apr 2005
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    Northern California
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    681
    Ed, the problem I see is with the distribution channel that exists for BT products. This stuff never hit the shelves in all reality. This may not specifically be something BT's can control, although it affects its products.

    So the real question for me is, ok BT is going to make some more releases of these types of items, are we ever even going to be able to see them or are the distributors and retailers going to just suck them up?

    To me that is a valid criticism that us BT fans would love to see rectified for future releases. BT's only problem at this point is that their products are so sought after than even the distributors and retailers are grabbing them up.
    "That rug really tied the room together" -- Jeffery Lebowski

  3. #73
    Bourbonian of the Year 2008
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    Feb 2005
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    116
    I agree Ed! Buffalo Trace has enough taste buds on the payroll to determine if a product will be right for the market place! I would say it was generous of them to bottle these experiments rather then dump them down the drain. With the limited amount, the 375ml bottles allowed a few additional people to aquire a bottle, even if it never reached the shelf. As far as distrubution, there's no other legal way without going to the trouble of letting some one pick it as a Single Barrel, letting it go to the distributor, then picking it up at some liquor store somewhere. How many people do you piss off selling it all to a single person or group?
    Randy

  4. #74
    Connoisseur
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    Northern California
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    can they sell alcohol at their store at the distillery? I don't know but i though distillers could do this.

    I am not trying to say what they should've done, but rather maybe there could be some other alternatives for the future.
    "That rug really tied the room together" -- Jeffery Lebowski

  5. #75
    Bourbonian of the Year 2008
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    Feb 2005
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    116
    Yes, they can sell bottles at the distillery, with limits. Then its first come first serve. The way it was distributed they had some control, and were able to reward the distributors and retailers they consider their best. If the distributors and retailers do the same with their best costomers Buffalo Trace still achives its goal.
    Randy

  6. #76
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
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    12,569
    As I understand the Kentucky law, the distillery has to obtain from the state a “souvenir retail liquor license.” Although the bottles to be sold in this way do not have to be physically conveyed through a wholesaler, such a transaction does have to take place on paper.

    There is a limit of three liters per visitor per day unless the souvenirs are purchased by a group (e.g., a package tour that includes them as part of the tour price), in which case the per-visitor limit is one liter.

    Although the law refers to merchandise sold under the souvenir retail liquor license as a “souvenir package,” that term is not defined and appears to be meaningless. In other words, it’s a normal production product sold as a souvenir.

    In fact, the creation of a product exclusively for gift shop sales appears to be prohibited by the following provision: “No wholesaler may restrict the sale of souvenir packages to the souvenir retail liquor licensee exclusively, but shall make souvenir packages available to any Kentucky retail licensee licensed for the sale of distilled spirits by the package.” In other words, although Buffalo Trace could have restricted sale of the EC to Kentucky wholesalers, hence Kentucky retailers, only, it could not by law restrict its sale exclusively to the BT gift shop.

    Would it have made any of those complaining happier if the EC had been available only in Kentucky, like Four Roses Single Barrel? I think Randy (Rancastle) has it right. They allocate it fairly to their distributors and hope for the best. That's really all they can do, except suggest how the distributors and, subsequently, the retailers might allocate it, but they can't control that. Some of the complainers seem to be saying, "if I can't have it, nobody should have it." Is that really what you want?

    Here's another way they could have gone and let's see if you like this better. They could have priced it at $300 a bottle. That probably would have slowed sales somewhat and improved availability. Would that have made you guys happy?
    Last edited by cowdery; 05-12-2006 at 11:45.

  7. #77
    Guru
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    May 2002
    Location
    Central Arizona (near Prescott), U.S.A.
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    4,235
    Considering the currents of ill will that exist now in some quarters and the lack of profit potential from such a limited release, if I were BT I would never again make such a scarce product available for sale through existing channels.

    How about this? Next time, they give it away. Or maybe raffle it in support of a bourbon related cause. Do it at a nationally known gathering where lots of bourbon fans are known to attend. Then open each bottle before handing it to the lucky buyer/winner.

    I won't have a dog in this hunt, but I wish all my SB friends good luck at the soon-to-be-announced (???) Buffalo Trace EC drawing/auction.

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield
    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

    Dog Lover, Euphonium Player, Campfire Guitarist, Marksman,

  8. #78
    Connoisseur
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    Northern California
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    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery
    Here's another way they could have gone and let's see if you like this better. They could have priced it at $300 a bottle. That probably would have slowed sales somewhat and improved availability. Would that have made you guys happy?

    or they could've packaged it in 50 ml bottles.
    "That rug really tied the room together" -- Jeffery Lebowski

  9. #79
    Taster
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Nara, Japan
    Posts
    98
    One thing seems certain, the EC wasn't meant for a general public release.

    It seems a lot of excitement was created because of the experimental and limited nature of the bourbon. After I saw the labels and realized these were basically standard proof bourbons in different wood, I lost my interest because I misunderstood the nature of the release. I failed to understand these were simply left over bottles that were meant to be sold to top clients as a way of saying thank you for buying BT.

    Knowing now what the EC really is has made me have no real interest in the bottles, not because I don't have a curiosity or think they'll taste interesting, but because I know there is a good chance these bourbons will eventually become future regular midshelf BT releases. I can wait and so can my wallet.

    The real issue is the various state regulations and overall alcohol distribution system in the U.S. that act like barriers between consumers and producers, which I doubt will ever change. That's too bad because companies like BT would benefit from a different system and so would we.
    -TMH aka Tim3

    You're not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on.
    -Dean Martin

  10. #80
    Taster
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Fairfax Virginia
    Posts
    50
    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery
    Would it have made any of those complaining happier if the EC had been available only in Kentucky, like Four Roses Single Barrel? I think Randy (Rancastle) has it right. They allocate it fairly to their distributors and hope for the best. That's really all they can do, except suggest how the distributors and, subsequently, the retailers might allocate it, but they can't control that. Some of the complainers seem to be saying, "if I can't have it, nobody should have it." Is that really what you want?

    Here's another way they could have gone and let's see if you like this better. They could have priced it at $300 a bottle. That probably would have slowed sales somewhat and improved availability. Would that have made you guys happy?
    cowdery:

    I'm one of the people that seems to fit into your group of complainers.

    Only 1,200 375ml bottles.

    How many distributors do they have?

    How many retailers do these distributors have?

    How many of these 375ml bottles would ever make it to a consumer that walked into a store?

    So - what is the purpose of this experimental release? Certainly not to draw any marketing information regarding the quality of the contents of these bottles from the general public or even the informed Bourbon drinking public.


    BTW - you said earlier in this thread :

    "Now that the cat is entirely out of the bag on this, how many of you are looking forward to paying $45 for a 375 ml bottle of "experimental" whiskey?"

    If $45 was too much then - then what's up with the $300 a bottle price question?

 

 

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