This weekend, guess what I did?
Went to another distillery. Who knew?
Anyway, to one I went to this week, named Heritage, is just outside of Tacoma and has a lot of distribution in the area. In fact they are the primary dealer with Safeco (home of your 1st place Mariners).
They have a flagship bourbon called BSB, or Brown Sugar Bourbon. It pretty much is all sugar; a drink for people who don’t like whiskey. But Heritage has other stuff as well. In fact, they have an entire array of bourbons, ryes, and craft stuff (such as bourbon aged in vanilla barrels or rye aged in orange casks), so it was worth dropping by and tasting their wares.
Upon entering their tasting room, there were signs everywhere boasting a 20% deal on all of their spirits. Sounding like a good deal, after tasting some of their whiskeys, I purchased one of their staples; Elk Rider Bourbon. It was clean, well-balanced, and at a base price of $40, the cost would be $32 (plus tax). In fact, since I purchased a $5 tasting, that gets comped with this purchase. So all in all, it seemed like a good deal.
Right after my purchase, I went to Costco to buy a few things. I wandered into their whiskey section to see if there was anything interesting, and lo and behold they had Elk Rider…………..for $27.
$27?!?!?!?!?! What the hell is that about?
I paid $5 more at their actual location (which is about 1 mile away from this Costco) and that is after the 20% discount.
I’ll repeat……what the hell?!?!
Apparently this is not an uncommon thing; Costco has many local wines and spirits that cost less than buying at the vineyard or distillery. I know Costco is a behemoth that can buy in bulk therefore getting a discount on their product. I also know distilleries (especially new ones) are desperate to get their product on the shelves.
But this is a slap in the ass. I mean these places make you think you are getting some sort of deal in their wares, they chat you up, make you feel good, and give you all sorts of information about their stuff. Yet it is all a lie.
You visit their place. You are interested in their product. You went out of your way to select them and see what they have. And what they do in return? Charge 7% extra and try to convince you it is a deal.
So from this time forth, I will only buy local whiskey from local businesses like Costco and Total Wine. No more will I believe their siren’s call to come forth and consume in their ‘amazing deals’.
To quoteth Admiral Ackbar: