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Wine & Spirits Bargains at the PLCB (Part 2)


jwjon1
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"They wanted to sharpen the market targeting at the various price points, and expand the drawing power to the non-Premium stores."

Not to needle Capaneus, but I've never understood what "price point" means. How is "price point" any different from the word "price?"

"Price" applies to an individual item, and it's usually given exactly. "Price point" means the set of items at a roughly similar price. It's more general than "price", since I would understand $9.99, $9.95, $9.75 to all belong to a single "price point".

It's possible to use "price" in a similar manner, but I think this is a case where jargon does give us added precision in expression. Your mileage may vay, of course.

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A small discovery as a byproduct of the Chapoutier Les Varennieres conversation: the six bottles I bought this morning at 1218 Chestnut disappeared from inventory between now and then. It appears that the system is getting closer to real-time information-gathering: last I had reliable information, inventory was updated overnight.

There are still small amounts scattered about, mainly in SE Pennsylvania: PLCB Code 020070.

But the 12 bottles shown in inventory at the Bryn Mawr store apparently don't exist. I looked, ... a clerk looked, ...the manager looked, ... half an hour later: No wine.

The 5 that were in West Chester are now in my cellar, though! :biggrin:

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A small discovery as a byproduct of the Chapoutier Les Varennieres conversation: the six bottles I bought this morning at 1218 Chestnut disappeared from inventory between now and then. It appears that the system is getting closer to real-time information-gathering: last I had reliable information, inventory was updated overnight.

There are still small amounts scattered about, mainly in SE Pennsylvania: PLCB Code 020070.

But the 12 bottles shown in inventory at the Bryn Mawr store apparently don't exist. I looked, ... a clerk looked, ...the manager looked, ... half an hour later: No wine.

The 5 that were in West Chester are now in my cellar, though! :biggrin:

The staff at 12th and Chestnut had to look for about that long: apparently, the wine had never made it onto the floor. Fortunately, we were luckier, but I would not necessarily assume the bottles don't exist.

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For all you Kaiken fans. Canal's @ $8.49

Best,

Mike

Not to plug Canals, but they will match anyone's price in NJ as long as you bring in the add. I've done this about 4 times now at the Lawrenceville store. I've been drinking Liberty School and their regular price was like $15 or something. Found it on wine access at $10 and they matched it.

Edited to add, just think how convenient it would be to actually be able to comparison shop in our own friggin state!

Edited by Jeff L (log)
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I always purchase cases of wine while in NJ or DE, but was at the Narberth store yesterday and they had Dyed in the Wool Pinot Noir in stock (one of my personal favorites, and one of the better sub-$15 Pinots out there).

The price was $13.99 a bottle and when I asked about the price per case, I was told "$13.99 times 12".

Aside from what appeared to be a snappy asnwer to a stupid question, does PA have a rule against case discounts? For the $28 discount, it was worth waiting...

I belch, therefore, I ate...

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I always purchase cases of wine while in NJ or DE, but was at the Narberth store yesterday and they had Dyed in the Wool Pinot Noir in stock (one of my personal favorites, and one of the better sub-$15 Pinots out there).

The price was $13.99 a bottle and when I asked about the price per case, I was told "$13.99 times 12".

Aside from what appeared to be a snappy asnwer to a stupid question, does PA have a rule against case discounts?  For the $28 discount, it was worth waiting...

Yes, Pa does. Giving stores the pricing flexibility that would allow managers to do that sort of thing was one goal Chairman Newman talked about often. Current Regime strikes me as having no such priorities. Though admittedly we still know very little about them.

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I have tried the Markham Zin and the Blackstone Cab and think both are excellent values ($10.99 & $9.99). In fact, the Blackstone was already sold out at the Jenkintown store when I went back to pick up some more last weekend.

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Quick rant - I've been watching the 2002 Ravenswood Monte Rosso zin on the Upcoming Chairman's Selection list. It's suddenly gone, but not on the in-stores CS list. A Product search shows about 1,000 bottles in PLCB stores...with none in Phila, Delaware or Montgomery counties....sigh. I hope that this is a timing issue and that they will soon be in the south-eastern part of the Commonwealth. I wish I could find rhyme or reason in the inventory mgmt.

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I always purchase cases of wine while in NJ or DE, but was at the Narberth store yesterday and they had Dyed in the Wool Pinot Noir in stock (one of my personal favorites, and one of the better sub-$15 Pinots out there).

The price was $13.99 a bottle and when I asked about the price per case, I was told "$13.99 times 12".

Aside from what appeared to be a snappy asnwer to a stupid question, does PA have a rule against case discounts?  For the $28 discount, it was worth waiting...

Yes, Pa does. Giving stores the pricing flexibility that would allow managers to do that sort of thing was one goal Chairman Newman talked about often. Current Regime strikes me as having no such priorities. Though admittedly we still know very little about them.

Thanks for the info... hard to see how this translates into anything but monopoly-rent-revenue for the State, esp. when you can get the same (read: exact) wine in neighboring states for less per-bottle and with a 10% case discount.

I belch, therefore, I ate...

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I was just watching the PCN [Pennsylvania Cable Network] call in show with the secretary of corrections.  And yes I know that is a pretty lame thing to be doing.  However, of note was the announcement that next Wednesday at 7:30pm Joseph Conti and Patrick Stapelton of the LCB will be taking calls.

Not sure if your cable system carries the PCN, but if so, tune in and dial them up. I'm sure they would love to get lots of calls from e-gullet LCB fans

just a reminder of this. dial them up and ask them WTF is going on? or something like that. I will not be able to do so as I have to Chair the town planning commission meeting tonight. I do plan to TIVO this event to watch later

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Quick rant - I've been watching the 2002 Ravenswood Monte Rosso zin on the Upcoming Chairman's Selection list.  It's suddenly gone, but not on the in-stores CS list.  A Product search shows about 1,000 bottles in PLCB stores...with none in Phila, Delaware or Montgomery counties....sigh.  I hope that this is a timing issue and that they will soon be in the south-eastern part of the Commonwealth.  I wish I could find rhyme or reason in the inventory mgmt.

Sometimes CS wines are distributed to stores in western PA a week or two before they're released in the SE part of the state. So, unless it was already in the local stores and sold out, be patient.

Not surprisingly, the sought after wines sell out quickly here, while they sit on the shelves out west.

Edited by Mano (log)

“Watermelon - it’s a good fruit. You eat, you drink, you wash your face.”

Italian tenor Enrico Caruso (1873-1921)

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Quick rant - I've been watching the 2002 Ravenswood Monte Rosso zin on the Upcoming Chairman's Selection list.  It's suddenly gone, but not on the in-stores CS list.  A Product search shows about 1,000 bottles in PLCB stores...with none in Phila, Delaware or Montgomery counties....sigh.  I hope that this is a timing issue and that they will soon be in the south-eastern part of the Commonwealth.  I wish I could find rhyme or reason in the inventory mgmt.

Sometimes CS wines are distributed to stores in western PA a week or two before they're released in the SE part of the state. So, unless it was already in the local stores and sold out, be patient.

Not surprisingly, the sought after wines sell out quickly here, while they sit on the shelves out west.

Thanks - that's my hope as there does seem to be a lot of it out there.

Still don't know why it went from the Up-coming CS list to being in the stores but not on the In-store CS list - not a big deal, but indicative of the inventory issues.

Guess we'll never see the state-wide virtual store with all temp-controlled storage :angry:

Speaking of distribution patterns, I watched a couple of great (relative) deals - 2003 Pegau Da Capo and 2002 Shafer Hillside Select @ over $100 cheaper than elsewhere in the country (not that I could afford them anyway) - Somehow, the 5 or 6 bottles in the State all ended up in Harrisburg-area stores. Must be some real oenophiles there...

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Quick rant - I've been watching the 2002 Ravenswood Monte Rosso zin on the Upcoming Chairman's Selection list.  It's suddenly gone, but not on the in-stores CS list.  A Product search shows about 1,000 bottles in PLCB stores...with none in Phila, Delaware or Montgomery counties....sigh.  I hope that this is a timing issue and that they will soon be in the south-eastern part of the Commonwealth.  I wish I could find rhyme or reason in the inventory mgmt.

Sometimes CS wines are distributed to stores in western PA a week or two before they're released in the SE part of the state. So, unless it was already in the local stores and sold out, be patient.

Not surprisingly, the sought after wines sell out quickly here, while they sit on the shelves out west.

Thanks - that's my hope as there does seem to be a lot of it out there.

Still don't know why it went from the Up-coming CS list to being in the stores but not on the In-store CS list - not a big deal, but indicative of the inventory issues.

Guess we'll never see the state-wide virtual store with all temp-controlled storage :angry:

Speaking of distribution patterns, I watched a couple of great (relative) deals - 2003 Pegau Da Capo and 2002 Shafer Hillside Select @ over $100 cheaper than elsewhere in the country (not that I could afford them anyway) - Somehow, the 5 or 6 bottles in the State all ended up in Harrisburg-area stores. Must be some real oenophiles there...

For years, Pittsburgh and Harrisburg have received a disproportionate amount of certain premium wines, including some of the smaller-quantity CS wines. Never could get a straight answer as to why that is - or even an admission that it happens. The standard retort was that SE Pa gets the lion's share of the wine. Which is true, in general, but doesn't explain this clear pattern of exceptions.

As to the Pegau and the Shaffer, my guess is that those prices are the result of the other, non CS-related, advantage of the PLCB: unlike other retailers, the retail price is determined solely by their purchase price, so when everybody else marks up wines in great demand, they remain at release price in Pa.

Oh, and it is definitely the case that stores in our area (SE Pa) often seem to get their allocations later than elsewhere, so don't despair. Yet.

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On one of my periodic browsing visits, I noticed that Chateau St. Pierre 1999 (Pomerol) has just showed up in the PLCB stores. At $24.99, this appears to be something of a bargain ($10 less than the lowest Wine-Searcher USA price).

Can anyone tell me what to expect here? The limited reviews that I have seen indicate that it should be fairly rich and ready to drink. I picked up a bottle to try but haven't had a chance to taste it yet. There appears to be lots of it around.

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A few of us really enjoyed the Iniskillin '05 Vidal Icewine the other day (Item #010211)

Still a hefty $30 for a 375ml bottle, but that's half, or less, the price of other recent vintages. To our palates, this certainly wasn't a dump-the-bad-year kind of deal, we loved it.

Sorry, this was after, and in the midst-of several other bottles of wine, so I don't have detailed tasting notes, beyond "wow!". I have traumatic memories of lots of bad wine made with Vidal grapes in upstate NY, but those Canadians can sure make a tasty elixir out them by letting them freeze...

There's a bit out in the burbs, a few cases left downtown.

Edited by philadining (log)

"Philadelphia’s premier soup dumpling blogger" - Foobooz

philadining.com

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A few of us really enjoyed the Iniskillin '05 Vidal Icewine the other day (Item #010211)

Still a hefty $30 for a 375ml bottle, but that's half, or less, the price of other recent vintages.  To our palates, this certainly wasn't a dump-the-bad-year kind of deal, we loved it. 

Sorry, this was after, and in the midst-of several other bottles of wine, so I don't have detailed tasting notes, beyond "wow!". I have traumatic memories of lots of bad wine made with Vidal grapes in upstate NY, but those Canadians can sure make a tasty elixir out them by letting them freeze...

There's a bit out in the burbs, a few cases left downtown.

Out of curiosity, was this the oaked or unoaked vidal?

In a side-by-side taste with the other varietals Inniskillin produces, the unoaked vidal gets blown away. Sadly, however, I don't think you will ever see the riesling or cab franc for $30 - and if you do, let me know... I will fall all over myself to stock up on it, blowing every red light and stop sign between me and the store if need be. :raz:

At any rate, $30 for any Inniskillin is pretty darned good. Might have to see if I can find some.

__Jason

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It's the Pearl Vidal, which I believe is unoaked, I sure didn't detect any oak.  I'm not sure how it would do side-by-side with any of the other varieties, but it did quite nicely beside some strong cheese!

I was among those who enojyed phil's icewine and, FWIW, I greatly preferred it to the Inniskillin Riesling that was a Chairman's Selection around 2005, which I found pretty unidimensional. I don't have tasting notes either but this had, among other things, some definite peachy notes for me. Didn't detect any oak either.

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It's the Pearl Vidal, which I believe is unoaked, I sure didn't detect any oak.  I'm not sure how it would do side-by-side with any of the other varieties, but it did quite nicely beside some strong cheese!

I was among those who enojyed phil's icewine and, FWIW, I greatly preferred it to the Inniskillin Riesling that was a Chairman's Selection around 2005, which I found pretty unidimensional. I don't have tasting notes either but this had, among other things, some definite peachy notes for me. Didn't detect any oak either.

I don't think I've had the Pearl vidal now that I think of it. I'm curious about it, though and should try to find a bottle. We've done side-by-side tastings on more than one occasion, but I'm pretty sure that was only with the "regular" vidal, which I likened to the syrup from a can of fruit cocktail. I always assumed that the reason they only oaked the vidal was because it was the only way to give it some character. But I suppose its fair to say that not all vidals are created equal... :smile:

So far, my fav Inniskillin is definitely the cab franc.

__Jason

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Omaka Springs Estates Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2006. $9.99. Real textbook New Zealand Sauv Blanc at a decent price. Seemingly made out of grapefruit peels with a bit of tropical guava in the background. 11% Semillon for a bit more body and way longer finish than most of the thin and weedy tasting trash that's passing for SB these days. Screwcap for easy access.

I just wrote this wine up for an upcoming issue of the Ritz Filmbill. I suggested pairing it with shellfish, a lightly dressed goat cheese salad or Maryland crabs. Ironically, right after I'd finished writing about it and turning in my blurb yesterday, my gracious dinner host served this very same wine next to a delicious roast chicken and some swiss chard malfatti (virtually flourless ricotta gnocchi). It was pretty delicious with that as well.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Omaka Springs Estates Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2006. $9.99.  Real textbook New Zealand Sauv Blanc at a decent price.  ...

We drank quite a bit of the 2005 over the course of last summer. It was a nice, solid New Zealand SB for an everyday drinking price.

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A mercifully short night at work (we had a private party that was over early) allowed me the luxury of cooking myself a nice dinner tonight. I cracked open a bottle of Hope Estate Hunter Valley Shiraz 2003 ($9.99) to accompany my Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheeseburger and veggies. I'd picked this up several weeks ago, but a quick search reveals a bit of it still around, particularly in Ardmore.

It's very elegant for a Shiraz, much less the "in your face" Aussie style that I'm accustomed to. Apparently the wine saw some American oak during fermentation and 60% French/40% American oak during maturation. It definitely took off the rough edges. Lots of plum and blackberry with a subtle dessert spiciness. Smells like pumpkin pie spice and white pepper to me. Very silky tannins. Not as much mouthfeel as I'd expect from a wine clocking in at 13% alcohol, but maybe that's a good thing. It certainly isn't hot. A real bargain for the quality.

I've been a big fan of the Hope Estate wines ever since I used to buy them as a by-the-glass pour at Striped Bass. Michael Hope, the winemaker, is a former pharmacist that got tired of listening to his customers complain about their health all day. He wanted to do something he enjoyed, so he bought some vineyards in 1994, picked up his family and moved to Hunter Valley to try and live the dream. The first vintage was produced in 1997. He's doing a pretty good job for a guy that hasn't been at it long. I really admire that. :smile:

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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