Living in the Capital Region of New York, I’ve seen this boom directly represented in the area’s liquor stores, both large and small.
In my local shopping experience I’ve seen NY liquor selections include everything from small batch vodka to craft rye whiskey, artisan rum and handcrafted bourbon. ‘Buying Local’ liquor is now even closer to home with so many choices becoming available within counties and even cities. The 90 or so small batch New York craft distilleries are located all over the state, from the very top near the Canadian border to the south in Brooklyn. The reach is far, and the growth tremendous.
This ‘boom’ provides liquor stores an entirely new category for their selection and a good percentage of them are enjoying the results of taking advantage of the rise in local options.
This new ‘local craft beverages’ category benefits the craft distillers, the discerning public and the liquor stores.
- REACH THE MARKET: The adoption of ‘buy local’ in the liquor industry creates a channel for the craft distilleries to reach a specific target market.
- MARKET DEMAND: Having a product prominently displayed in a ‘buy local’ display has developed a market demand for craft distillers small batch liquors.
- MORE INTERESTING CHOICES: With liquor stores increasingly stocking more local bottles on their shelves gives you more choices and the means to indulge their desire to ‘buy local’ and support the area’s economy.
- FIRST TO FIND UNIQUE & NEW PRODUCTS: Having easy access to local small batch spirits allows you to easily find and enjoy new and interesting tastes.
- NEW TARGET MARKET: Stocking their shelves with local craft distillery spirits draws a new target market to the store. Once it is known that a liquor store has a wide local selection, the discerning public will spread the word.
- REPEAT VISITS: That same market is curious and adventurous and will make repeat visits to the same store to see if there are any new craft distillers products or local ‘in-store’ tastings.
This NY Capital Region liquor store created an amazing display dedicated to locally produced small batch craft spirits. As soon as you walk in the door of All Star Liquor in Latham, NY you are greeted immediately with New York small batch vodka, craft rye whiskey, artisan rum, handcrafted bourbon and more.
In my Capital Region observations, our liquor stores all have their own unique and different ways of presenting their New York state spirits. Some will mix the New York spirits on the shelves among all other options, others will have a specific shelf or display dedicated to locally produced bottles, and others will have a mixture of both.
My favorite style of presentation that I’ve witnessed in both large and small stores is a ‘Buy Local’ display that is located immediately on entry to the store. Some stores will also offer tastings and seminars from local distillers, where the drinking public has the opportunity to ‘meet the maker’.
There are a good number of liquor stores in the Capital Region that promote their state’s craft beverage industry. I’ve included a video and a photo of two liquor stores I’ve visited recently here in the Capital Region that have great ‘buy local’ displays. I definitely encourage you to look around and see what great 'buy local' supporters you can find too!
For you, as the ‘buy local’ consumer, the key is to ask. If you’re interested in supporting local craft spirit distillers, definitely ask a liquor store staff member, they are typically very knowledgeable and want to help you find something you will enjoy. It is also helpful to the local distillery for you to ask and encourage more liquor stores to offer local options.
Think New York. Drink New York.