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Give us free! - Part II

Some of you out there may recall my previous posting on efforts in the wine world to provide more equitable wine sales to consumers throughout the U.S. For the uninitiated, or those that are clever and/or fortunate enough to live in States that do not restrict wine sales: I live in PA, which houses one of the largest and most anachronistic 3-tier wine sales systems in the country; the end result being that to obtain a wine I really want, I either

  1. have to buy it from a state-run liquor store (assuming the carry it, since they limit choice to what they can buy most cheaply) or
  2. if not available directly in the store, special-order it so that it is shipped to the store (and not to me), paying an upcharge to the PLCB for the "privilege" or
  3. drive to DE and buy from their more-competitively-priced, larger, and all-around supieror selection (technically this is a crime, and is also my preferred method).
In fairness, I should point out that it's not in all cases that the PLCB has the highest prices for wines. It's only in most cases, due mostly to the added taxes. And, as fellow PA blogger David McWherter pointed out when he did some comparison shopping on PLCB v. non-PLCB wine prices, price is not the only obstacle to PA wine-lovers created by the PLCB:
  • Only in one case did the PLCB have the best price available. In about half the wines, the PLCB was competitive --- within 10% of the best price available, but the other half, the prices were significantly higher. If you have to buy your wine, buy it when you're not in Pennsylvania. You'll get a better selection and (if you look for it) a better price. Of course, almost NONE of the wines listed above could actually be purchased at a PLCB store near me, even though I could buy those wines online if I lived in Ohio.
    Full article here.

I've recently been checking out another gem of a web resource in the fight against all of this monopolistic madness - the Wine Without Borders Blog. Check it out - and, if you suffer in a state with Communist practices like mine, consider donating to their cause!


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