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Westy XII avail in Pasadena for the bargin price of. . . .

Discussion in 'US - Pacific' started by AndresR, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. AndresR

    AndresR Savant (250) California Jul 19, 2009

    $55 per bottle. Maybe I should dished out for a Brick afterall?

    http://la.eater.com/archives/2013/01/24/rich_people_things.php

    For any beer nerds with extra bucks to blow, Trattoria Neapolis in Pasadena is right now selling a rare and rather pricey $55/bottle Belgian beer, Westvleteren XII, described by some as "the best beer in the world." The brew first debuted in the US just last month and Trattoria Neapolis was able to secure 19 bottles, 16 of which remain. The Italian restaurant is selling three bottles per week on Mondays until supplies run out. [EaterWire]
  2. mrcraft

    mrcraft Advocate (605) California Dec 15, 2012

    I wonder what they were charging before if they only sold 3 bottles since the release?
  3. blguillen

    blguillen Savant (300) California Apr 19, 2011

  4. I support it. I sure as shit wouldnt pay that, but I think it is a fair price for the "experience" of having "the best beer in the world."
  5. .....I don't think they had it before the release. They just have it now because they hoarded bricks at the release.
  6. damn i wonder what the monks would say about that
    also I think that must be against the law to resell beer to go
    it can't be legal
    and OMG what a markup $55 for one 12oz bottle glad i got mine for $15
  7. I, personally, think its quite arrogant for the monks to have a pre-set price that retailers have to buy it for as well as a MSRP with only a $2.5 mark up. Its a two way road. If I heard some brewery I have supported over the years need to have a fundraising effort to rebuild, I would gladly help them by sacrificing any margin to help them out, however, when a random brewery in Belgium who I have never worked with asks something like that, I think its bullshit.

    I purchased a case for our shop. I split up a brick and gave a few as gifts, kept a couple for my self. We are going to put it on the list when the hype cools down a bit for quite a mark up, and I have no shame in that.
    mtk180 likes this.
  8. domtronzero

    domtronzero Initiate (0) California Aug 18, 2007

    It's that kind of attitude that will keep me away from the Grape & Grain. Thanks for letting me know so I don't waste my time.
  9. I'm not sure if arrogance has anything to do with it. I don't think they consider themselves to be a brewery--more a monastery that brews beer. They brew just enough to support their operations and local charities. So while I don't think they really have any control over what happens to the product they make once it reaches the market in this instance, they're at least attempting to put limitations on the amount of profit they make. Sure it doesn't sound like good business sense but I doubt they're concerned with that.
  10. rgco

    rgco Aficionado (180) California Apr 2, 2012

    You and your business are driven by profits, hence why you have no issue marking up bottles from this random brewery no one has ever heard of. They are not concerned with a large profit, only enough to cover the costs of a new roof so they can continue to make good beer and support the community. If that can be construed as arrogance, I have a bottle of Westy to sell you!
    Whatsarezaf, Franch and jasonmason like this.
  11. Ah, but your logic is flawed. They already made the money by you purchasing the brick. That you are now going to sell it for "quite a mark up" is only blatantly lining your pockets; nothing of that additional markup is going to help the abbey. I'd say it's a bit of a stretch to call Westvleteren "a random brewery in Belgium" as well.

    Furthermore, your unrepentant profiteering is a disservice to the 'community' at large, since in doing this the monks will likely be less open to releasing XII for sale like this again. Businesses like yours are precisely why they don't normally retail this beer.
  12. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) California Dec 10, 2011

    Then why get involved at all if you're not interested in helping the Monks out. Acts like this only will insure the monks never again release the beer in this manner. As they say "It only takes a few bad apples" and you seem to be running for the Douchebag-of-the-Year award with this one. I guess I know where I can find you to give you your DotY prize. Nice steaming pile of horse manure.

    Whatever right? Make as much profit as you can in spite of the spirit of the Monk's wishes.
    jrnyc, Franch, domtronzero and 2 others like this.
  13. nanobrew

    nanobrew Initiate (0) California Dec 31, 2008

    You knew ahead of ordering what the Monks were asking. If you did not agree with what they were asking you shouldn't have ordered any. By ordering the beer you essentially were agreeing to their terms.


    As for the restaurant mentioned in the OP, I would not pay that much for this beer. I am not 100% leaning one way or the other on whether it is "right". Part of it depends on if they ordered the beer from the brewery/distributor, or if they sent out mules to buy it and then resell it. If ordered from the distributor, I think they are 100% wrong for doing this, if the other way, I frown upon it but know of other places that do the same. No matter what they would not get my business just like the places I know of locally that do similar things.
    BdubleEdubleRUN and DrtyBvrJuce like this.
  14. DrtyBvrJuce

    DrtyBvrJuce Initiate (0) California Jan 17, 2013

    Wow. Funny. But that Grape and grain guy is not cool. Avoiding his place for sure.
    jrnyc, salzar and domtronzero like this.
  15. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) California Dec 10, 2011

    It takes a real special person to come on here and basically tell the monks to fuck off and brag about gouging on the case of beer he posesses. Total BAsshole.
    jrnyc, pinkgrenade and domtronzero like this.
  16. nanobrew

    nanobrew Initiate (0) California Dec 31, 2008


    [​IMG]
    BdubleEdubleRUN and SageO like this.
  17. I'm not supporting this Grape & Grain dude at all, but how many shops are really about the community? I personally haven't seen any shops in my experience that don't gouge at least a little bit. It seems that profits overtake the BA community after some money is being made. But we support those that don't blatantly do it.
  18. domtronzero

    domtronzero Initiate (0) California Aug 18, 2007

    I'm ok with profits and all, just don't wave it in my face all like "fuck you" about it. At least have some damn tact.
  19. yeah, I know places will mark up here and there and some shops charge a buck or two more than others. That's just the way life works. But if you're going to brag about it and say "Oh yeah, I'll definitely be marking that shit up cause, hey, fuck the beer makers" is someone I will not be supporting in the slightest.

    Oh yeah, and the whole "Yeah, I gave some to my friends and family and then kept some for myself.... so here, enjoy the mark up so I can not only recoup the cost, but capitalize on the hype" mentality is not one that will gather too much loyalty.
    jrnyc, Johnnyramirez and domtronzero like this.
  20. never been to your bar before, but when i'm in the bay area, i think i'll bring in my own bottle and enjoy it at the counter instead of buying something. if it were a local bar, i'd gladly buy their stuff and pay what they ask, but when some random bar across the state expects me to buy their beer when i stop in, i think it's bullshit.

    capitalism should be a free-for-all on both sides of the aisle.
    BdubleEdubleRUN, jrnyc, vurt and 4 others like this.
  21. hophead247

    hophead247 Savant (430) California Jan 27, 2008

    Eagerly awaiting damage control....
  22. AndresR

    AndresR Savant (250) California Jul 19, 2009

    So, yeah....$55 a bottle in Pasadena. How about that?

    ;)
  23. DrtyBvrJuce

    DrtyBvrJuce Initiate (0) California Jan 17, 2013

    No good. Both places are violating the spirit of the monks offering. Just sell it once in awhile at the bartenders descretion for $15. They probably have such a limited supply that they won't be seeing a massive windfall. Especially not with this negative publicity that's going to drive people away.
  24. Violating the Monks' spirit and violating the law. Retail to retail is illegal.

    When stores got the Westvleteren XII gift packs, there was a disclaimer in the email. If you wanted the beer, you agreed to sell it for $84.99 a 6 pack and not sell single bottles. The cost was $82.50. Though it's not legally binding, a deal is a deal.

    I thought about selling the gift packs for more money but to viiolate an agreement is just bad business. No matter how much extra money you make, it will cost you more in the long run to sell the gift packs for more than $85. Nobody wants to be "that guy" and doing it openly is pretty shocking.
  25. pinkgrenade

    pinkgrenade Savant (260) California Aug 19, 2011

    tactful response and nice to know that some people still have working moral compasses

    there is nothing arrogant about setting a price for this beer. they needed profits for their livelihood , and we're all lucky we had an easy way to buy their beer! since its never been sold outside their monastery it was a big deal and hopefully will happen again if it wasn't ruined by certain retailers...
    jrnyc and domtronzero like this.
  26. Popcorn anyone?
    pinkgrenade, flexabull and blguillen like this.

  27. Personally, I am grateful to trollboy here. He helped me recall how many retail outlets kept the faith and sold those bricks for minimal profit. A big fat kudos to those who helped us support the monks.

    p.s. - Westvleteren a 'random brewery in Belgium' ... now that was pretty funny.
    jasonmason and pinkgrenade like this.
  28. Are the glasses nice? If they aren't nice I wouldn't even step foot in the place
  29. I get you. His post was completely shameless. I just played Devil's advocate because it seems like there's alot of shops that aren't about the community and only for profit but don't get blasted for it. However, they aren't shamelessly profiteering like this douche is.
    jasonmason and domtronzero like this.
  30. Azrael

    Azrael Initiate (0) Jan 9, 2013

    I don't know, I'm not too close to there and I've never been.

  31. After getting called on his bluster, seems he tucked his tail between his legs and went home.
    jrnyc likes this.
  32. grrrah

    grrrah Savant (320) California Sep 21, 2009

    I'll play the devil's advocate (and put on my flame suit), but G&G is not a retail store like BevMo or your local bottle shop. There is a huge difference between a retail store selling their stock for 3x msrp to maximize profits and a restaurant/bar/lounge charging a higher price for a premium wine or liquour that doesn't come around often.

    I'm not sure about the rest of you, but plenty of times, I have walked into a bar and purchased a pint of quality but common beer for $6 a pint, or $8 for a Sculpin, etc. I don't walk in expecting a common IPA for $1.50. $6 would be approximatly 3x MSRP. I've paid 4x MSRP for a fine wine at a restaurant, and 5x for Scotch. I've even paid $350 for a bottle of grey goose at a lounge/club (yeah financially stupid, but given the situation, I would do it again). Of course I wouldn't pay much above msrp if wanted to buy something at BevMo and drink it in my basement.

    Most retail stores I knew sold 50 to 200 packs of the Westy (not counting what they hoarded for themselves and friends) and made a small profit. Adam got 1 case, and kept or shared 1/2 with his buds, and is offering a few at his bar for a premium. With the low volume, I doubt he's trying to cover his rent or earn a huge profit. The place in Pasadena is selling for ~3.5x msrp. Sure adam definitely could have used a bit more tact in his post, but I generally prefer the straight forward honest approach.

    Disclaimer: I have been to G&G a couple of times, and have met Adam, but not much more than an introduction. He probably wouldn't recognize me, and I don't know him well enough to say if he is a cool guy, nor a douchebag. G&G isn't my favorite beer bar in the area, so I may go there again, I may not, but I'm not gonna hold this against him and boycott his place.
    AptosBeerDrinker likes this.
  33. All of this is irrelevant considering the agreement that was made when the allocation was purchased.
  34. Franch

    Franch Advocate (540) New York Mar 22, 2011

    westvleteren 12 was distributed to many stores in new york city. some of the worst offenders with regard to price gouging and super markups. yet, from the fairest stores to those typically way above market, with ONE exception, sold at $85. shelton brothers put the fear of god into every account - sell it for $85. should you legally be able to sell it for $20 or $50 a bottle? sure. but that should come with the consequences of your own douchebaggery. the one exception in NYC told everyone in line that there was a "mistake" and they "never got it" because they broke release date to sell the bricks at $125, and proceeded to come on BA and tell customers "fuck you" (disclosure - me) -- i will never shop there again, and i hope many others follow suit.

    just the same, G&G, enjoy your markup. BAs, i hope you don't shop there, to show how distasteful you find this store's fully legal, yet fully douchey maneuver truly is.
    jrnyc likes this.
  35. Xul

    Xul Advocate (525) California May 18, 2008

    I've genuinely wondered since the release - did Shelton REALLY care if retailers sold for $85? I know I won't get the answer to that unless a retailer chooses to share what Shelton may or may not have threatened them with, but from a practical perspective, Shelton doesn't need to be overly concerned with pissing off Saint Sixtus since it was a one-time deal and even then, Shelton can tell the abbey that they did everything they could to keep their retailers in line. If one of Shelton's really good accounts sold the bricks for $90, is Shelton really going to pull the account? What's the worst practical threat? You won't see any Cantillon this year? Most accounts won't see it anyway, big loss.

    Like I said, if any retailers want to dispute my view, I'd genuinely be interested to know what Shelton said/did, but I'd be surprised if there was any real threat about charging over $85.
  36. grrrah

    grrrah Savant (320) California Sep 21, 2009

    Fair enough, and I understand your point. But I still think there is a difference between retail and bar/restaurant use. Most retail stores also have agreements to sell at msrp, and its not always followed. Everything in this particular case just happens to be under a microscope by all of us. So just to prod some more (sorry, no offense), would it be okay if they were selling them at $14 a bottle? Because not breaking up the pack was part of the agreement also. Okay, I'll stop instigating crap now.. cheers!
    flexabull likes this.
  37. This sounds like he is trying to make a profit:

    blguillen likes this.
  38. Shelton Bros. didn't contact retailers directly here in so cal. The distributor did. Either way, there were no threats made at all. Just a friendly but firm email listing the terms. No splitting 6 packs, no selling before 12-12-12, and no retail above $85. That's all.

    Pissing off Shelton Bros and/or their distributor is just a bad idea in general to be honest. They sell Cantillon, Struise, Mikkeller, Fantome, 3F, and many others. Would they cut an account's allocations off? Maybe, maybe not. But why take the risk? And if an account wasnt already getting rare stuff from them, they wouldnt be eligible to get Westvleteren in the first place. Besides, them and their distributor have always been pleasant to work with. Why dick them and ignore the deal?

    Shelton Bros. doesn't want to piss off they Abbey either. An importer is always looking for great new brands and a negative response from Saint Sixtus may affect new contracts.

    I do want to say that Shelton Bros. and their distributors handled it VERY well as far as I know, in So Cal at least.

    And Grahhh, the only agreements I have ever made as a retailer to sell any booze for SRP were for Westvleteren, Russian River, and Macallan, for a bottle of their 1966. But Macallan made me agree to not sell it for LESS than SRP, which was quite high. Go figure.

    It's not arrogance at all! They are Monks that dedicate their lives to worshipping God and advancing their religion and spirit. They make the beer to support that and only that. No matter what your religious beliefs are, that's something that should be respected.

    And really, if you're a retailer and agreed to the terms and are now selling them for a big markup, you shouldn't have ordered it in the first place. Your extra profits are going to come back and bite you in the ass.
    jrnyc likes this.
  39. jrnyc

    jrnyc Advocate (630) New York Mar 21, 2010

    What bullshit. If you openly flouted that you were going to resell this beer for quite a mark up, you never would have got it. Now you have it and are going to rip-off your customers with quite a mark up. Hopefully your business Grape and Grain gets enough bad publicity here so any extra profits made by selling this beer at quite a mark up or eroded by lost business.
  40. pinkgrenade

    pinkgrenade Savant (260) California Aug 19, 2011

    did the bricks get sold to bars? i was under the impression it was only going to shops. which would make sense since they didnt want them split up

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