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Costco and Craft Beer

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by QuakeAttack, May 21, 2013.

  1. swolepeer

    swolepeer Savant (250) California May 23, 2013

    I went to the Morena Blvd location in San Diego today and the only bombers they had were Ballast Point Dorado. Wondering when they change the selection cause a couple weeks ago they were selling some Saison Du Pont bombers and another belgian.
     
  2. shand

    shand Advocate (645) Florida Jul 13, 2010

    C'mon man. You're a Costco shopper, you know as well as me that the asterisk means "We're not getting any more of these and want them off the shelf, please do us a favor and buy them all". You would have done them a favor if you bought them all!
     
    2beerdogs, BeerBum and Esper1 like this.
  3. 0.0 I think I just got a hard-on
     
    jdmandel and Kyrojack like this.
  4. Zbyler

    Zbyler Aficionado (210) Connecticut Jan 18, 2013

    Brookfield
     
  5. DougC123

    DougC123 Savant (290) Connecticut Aug 21, 2012

    Damn. That's my Costco. No need for me to go in now, although someone mentioned a few of their own branded wines were highly rated, so it might be worth a visit for my wife.
     
  6. sicilian

    sicilian Savant (270) Florida Sep 30, 2008

  7. Zbyler

    Zbyler Aficionado (210) Connecticut Jan 18, 2013

    Some of their branded wines and liquor are pretty decent actually. Beer selection sucked when I went in there about a month ago.
     
  8. Sorry was out of town...yes Signal Hill!
     
  9. Guess I will be going there from now on. The Lakewood Costco hasn't been carrying the 24 packs of Stone IPA like it used to.

    FWIW- If it hasn't been mentioned, no membership need at Sams Club.

    Salud!
     
  10. Eduk8traz

    Eduk8traz Aficionado (185) Arizona Nov 13, 2010

    Yeah they have a lot of those here in Phoenix as well.
     
  11. The Costco in Spokane valley doesn't sell the good stuff. The only thing decent they sell are cases of Alaskan (right now the summer version). The rest is Mexican beers (I think it's the dos Equis, modello mix case), pyramid, and the usual InBev stuff. I haven't checked the one in north Spokane yet. Half the time, I go up to TW or go to the class VI here on base.
     
  12. elNopalero

    elNopalero Advocate (675) Texas Oct 14, 2009

    Where is this magical place?
     
    SnowFlowMfg likes this.
  13. I remember Northridge's Costco having a few Unibroue's earlier this year.
     
  14. I break even on my membership fees in gas alone, everything else is on the house!!!!!!!
     
  15. BlindSalimander

    BlindSalimander Savant (250) Texas Aug 16, 2010

    Can you imagine. Think of the harp music and stuff you would hear in your head if you ever saw that.
     
  16. elNopalero

    elNopalero Advocate (675) Texas Oct 14, 2009

    '''and then the skies parted and lo it was a case of Parabola for far less than anywhere else. And it was good."
     
    BlindSalimander likes this.
  17. Stugotzo

    Stugotzo Savant (495) Florida Jun 13, 2012

    I went to my local Costco (Clearwater, FL) last night, hoping that some of these glorious stories of finding amazing craft beer at Costco would hold true for me..... A RESOUNDING NO!

    They had cases of some Magic Hat selection, which included #9 (couldn't remember the other 3 beers in there) for $26 (give or take). The had cases of Sam Adams Summer Selections (6 varieties, 4 bottles each... included plain Boston Lager), again for around $26. That was it. Other than that, the usual selections of Miller Lite, Corona, Heineken, Coors Light, Bud Light, and some "Mexican Variety Case that included Dos Equis". If they do get any more of the Chimay bombers, I may grab a bunch if they're still $9.99. They went up to $12.99 recently at my Total Wine. :mad:
     
  18. I stopped at the Costco in Bloomfield Hills and they must have had at least a couple dozen "big-bottle-beers" (as my wife calls them.:) . A good mix of IPA's and Belgians including both Red and Blue Chimay's, Arrogant Bastard, and a Delirium Tremens which quickly found it's way into my cart. Most were under $10 and a few as low as $7.
     
  19. I would have pushed all of these boxes into my cart and ask for any remaining case in the back so I can share 'em with BA fellows! 10.99 bucks? That's a fucking steal.
     
  20. HeyJim

    HeyJim Savant (385) Pennsylvania Sep 22, 2012

    I live in Pennsylvania.

    See Also : No.
     
  21. the latest somewhat noteworthy item i witnessed last week was 10 cases of the Bruery's White Oak ($11.99) amongst other goodies.
     
  22. DinoFight

    DinoFight Aficionado (235) Arizona Jan 23, 2013

    We too have some great beer selections at our Costco stores in AZ. Spotted this week was pallets of Stone Ruin Ten for a great price.

    [​IMG]
     
    teraflx, nauc and 2beerdogs like this.
  23. Big fan of all Costco does.
    Treating their employees well to providing families bargain deals (as long as they are all hungry!)

    I'm just as hungry for all the cases of beer they offer too....
     
    DropDead and nauc like this.
  24. I liked your post. And by like, of course I mean I don't like it. Freakin' PA.
     
  25. 2beerdogs

    2beerdogs Champion (780) California Jan 31, 2005

    Holy Shizzle!!! I never saw Parabola at Costco...and look at that price!!!!!:eek: That's awesome. I worked for the company for over a decade & I've never seen that good of a beer offering. But they had Stone's Ruin Ten last week at the Fullerton, CA location.
     
  26. 2beerdogs

    2beerdogs Champion (780) California Jan 31, 2005

    ^^This is true. Also works for RX.
     
  27. elNopalero

    elNopalero Advocate (675) Texas Oct 14, 2009

    I went to the SF store and found pretty much the same stuff I can find in the area, at about the same prices. Including the cases of Wookey Jack bottled back in March (@ $5.99). First time I've seen 8 packs of Stone bombers tho.
     
  28. I shop at Costco in Edinburgh all the time but they have never carried a single bottle or can of American craft beer EVER.
    And yes, I am pretty pissed off about it.
    :mad::mad::mad::mad::mad:
     
  29. DougC123

    DougC123 Savant (290) Connecticut Aug 21, 2012

    We've got both kinds of beer at ours, Bud and Bud Light.
     
    Spikester likes this.
  30. terrible picture (phone!!) a Costco here has had White Oak ($11.99) for almost a month now. kind of surprised the 13 cases didn't disappear a little faster.

    [​IMG]
     
  31. I've seen some comments about different costco's in different areas carrying different stuff, so here's the scoop...

    They are broken into 9 regions: Northwest, Bay Area, LA, San Diego, Texas/SW, Midwest, Northeast (VA and up), Southeast, and "business delivery". The buyers in each region have complete control over what they carry as to best be able to capitalize on local trends and meet their own margin and gross sales goals. There is also a maximum margin they can make on items, which is why sometimes you'll find something that is comically cheaper than it would be in other stores.

    (and no, I am not a costco employee.)
     
  32. parabola 10.99.... holy shit i would clean the shelf
     
  33. opwog

    opwog Advocate (580) Minnesota Jun 16, 2008

    Then I have been unlucky enough to have lived in multiple regions where the buyers don't give a shit enough to worry about "local trends." I have moved around and traveled the country quite a bit and have had multiple OC and LA county locations as local and now multiple Twin Cities area Costcos that I go to, as well as all the ones in between as I traveled and I have yet to see anything more compelling than the seasonal 12 packs from Sam Adams. I know that they are out there somewhere, because I see the photos and hear the stories about all of these great finds, but I have never personally found anything even close to beers being mentioned in threads like this. Really pisses me off, because I have made calls to regional buyers when living in OC/LA area and they blamed it on not being offered anything. I think that it is just a matter of having lazy beer buyers who would rather take the simple route than to juggle more SKUs.
     
    Spikester likes this.

  34. In their defence, Costco is a retailer that intentionally keeps a low SKU count. If the buyer is hitting their targets selling bmc and sam adams, they don't have a lot of incentive to enter into SKU proliferation. Solid trends on a handful of SKU's which represent a large portion of the alcohol category may be more profitable than a lot of SKU's which make up a smaller share.

    The bay area and northwest regions tend to cater to niche crowds much more so than the others. Hopefully you're lucky enough to live in one of those areas at some point. I have not had such luck either.
     
  35. opwog

    opwog Advocate (580) Minnesota Jun 16, 2008

    Lived in Berkeley when I was getting a later degree, but was not a Costco member, but I doubt that in the early 90's, that any Costco's carried anything like these.
     
  36. Only 3 Costco-owned liquor stores in Eastern MA (Waltham, Avon, Danvers), the others are contract stores and don't carry anything interesting. No membership required to shop at liquor store, but Executive members get rebates there as well. The Waltham, MA, was supposed to have been a trial run of big-bottle Belgians a couple of years ago. They had a damn good selection (8 total) at under $10. Then they thinned out... All MA stores carried 18 mixed packs of Belgian beer (I believe a selection from Leffe stable, but not all Leffe-branded). Earlier in the year, they had cases of Hoegaarden bombers and 3-packs of Duvel 750s for $21. Harpoon and SamA cases (including seasonal mixes) are a staple, of course. Last time I saw a 4-pack of SamA bombers @$20. Haven't checked in a while, but expect they'd have something interesting this time of year. Don't think they get any local craft aside from those cases. Nashua, NH store had Smuttynose mixed cases.
     



  37. Right? Stupid PA laws. :(
     
  38. I know for a fact that the Costco nearest to Berkeley carried Sierra Nevada and Pete's Wicked as staples in the early 1990s. It was never all BMC. (Still think the best deal at Costco is their Kirkland-branded tequila.)

    I chatted with store managers and regional buyers at a couple of places and they told me that liquor buyers have partial autonomy at each store because of differences in state laws on distribution (MA is a pain in the ass in particular). They have some basic defaults that everyone in the region gets and get to supplement with other things. As I wrote above, Waltham was the first store to carry Belgian 750s as an experiment. No one else had them. I've seen some different local cases in NYC and in VA stores, but don't recall what they had specifically. Wouldn't surprise me if DE stores had DFH, but I didn't see anything of the sort when I visited there.

    Here's the scoop on Costco pricing. They are allowed to carry multiple items in each sector, but the average markup across each sector must be 6%. That's why you may see things disappear--it's not only one-time buys or things they can't sell, but if the wholesale price goes up enough to reduce the margin or make it uncompetitive. The definition of each sector is pretty liberal, so BMC likely does not fall in the same category as "craft", "import" or "local" beer. One-of-a-kind items may be exempt from the 6% requirement, but are subject to other restrictions (which is why you see Ruin10 for $5.39 and Parabola for $11). And the 6% is not the minimum--it's the overall goal. They don't try to screw the customers. OTH, if one item is priced 8.5% above wholesale, another might get only a 4% margin, so getting more variety (given the limited floor space) is advantageous.
     
  39. Stugotzo

    Stugotzo Savant (495) Florida Jun 13, 2012

    I liked your entire post, except for that line.

    There seems to be a prevailing attitude in this country lately, that everyone is a victim. Nobody is putting a gun to anyone's head (to my knowledge) to force one to buy something. If the price is too high for your liking, don't buy it. Pretty simple really. This is especially true for an item like beer... hardly a necessity like air or water. Though, that last remark may seem like blasphemy on this forum. ;)
     
    5thOhio and VictorWisc like this.
  40. jcb7472

    jcb7472 Savant (445) Florida Jul 13, 2011

    Any idea what Costco carries in Florida, or specifically in South FL? I am a BJ's member but the only craft they have is Sam Adams so I don't buy beer there, but I feel like I might be missing out on some deals at Costco.
     

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