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Employees buying up limited releases

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by cactusleon, Feb 4, 2013.

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  1. Catchy_Name

    Catchy_Name Dec 21, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    But to that point, I know what it's like to not like a job. Hell, I'm not wild about the one I currently have. And we don't work because we want to, we work because we have to. And in a time when the job market is so bad and companies essentially can take away any and every benefit because they know people can't afford to quit, it's nice to know there are still some perks. And let's not kid ourselves, our employers may not be doing us favors by hiring us, but they do still need us.
  2. Plenum

    Plenum Apr 29, 2009 New Jersey

    I'm fine with employees getting an allocation for limited releases. In fact, I'm in favor of it...they get more educated about their product, and it keeps them happy at their job...both a plus for me, the consumer. Sure I'm annoyed when I go look for something that been raided at every store in NJ. But there are alternatives. I now order my Cantillon by the box from Belgium (plug there if you spotted it). I go outside of NJ for Founders and Tilquin (Matt, I'm coming down there I promise!). And maybe into NY to supplement some of the others.

    I did my fair share of bottle chasing, and am frankly now content with what I can find when I look. And every now and again a surprise comes to light...like the two cases of Cantillon Classic just sitting there in back-to-back stores, or the case of KBS or two cases of Backwoods Bastard that were unexpected finds...even the case of GIBCS or the bottle of Stille Nacht Special Riserva...it happens...just be patient, establish a good rapport with one or two beer managers, and temper any expectations that you are entitled to at least one bottle of every new release that comes out.
    quetzal013 likes this.
  3. digdug1810

    digdug1810 Mar 1, 2011 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    didn't read the whole thread, just figured i'd toss in my .02 that Total Wine is notorious of this and other shit they are always pulling.. at least by me in NJ.

    I remember back when CBS hit i was told by an employee to not bother trying to get it b/c with the 1 case they got 7 where being held for employees and the other 5 would be gone to the first 5 people in line when the store opened.
    Another recent development i had with total wine was with Wake-n-Bake, i went online to their site and you can purchase beer, so i put my purchase in for 2 4 packs of wake-n-bake, when i get confirmation i can pick it up I go in and they then tell me i can only have 1. I tell them well my order statement and your receipt of such says 2 so i'll go ahead and take 2. the manager comes over and explains the allotment thing with the beer, which i figured would be the case but their system allowed me to order 2 so i said to them, what you aren't going to honor my order? they did that time but said in the future that if it's an allotted item and i order more than the allotment that they reserve the right to sell me what they determine.. which to my reply was if that's the case fix your computers systems so they can handle allocated beers and don't let orders go through for which you can't honor. I work with databases systems/IT i know it can be done if they have a system in place to do online orders. I always get so much damn attitude from the people in Total Wine near me too, must miserable ass holes of any beer store in the area, it's unbelievable how much they have their heads up their asses most of the time. I very very rarely will shop there b/c of this, but occasionally when there is a highly allocated beer and i would like to get the bottles i'm trying to obtain i will go there.. but it's always a pain in the balls
  4. ggwheeler

    ggwheeler Jan 8, 2011 California

    This entire thread is infuriating.

    I didn't think 12 year-olds were allowed to buy beer in the first place.
  5. ShogoKawada

    ShogoKawada May 31, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Of course. But they don't have to. That's the point. They get perks.
  6. leedorham

    leedorham Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    Just in case nobody paid attention, OP said the store received two cases. For those of you who don't math, that means only eight people get a 6-pack.
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  7. Chaney

    Chaney Apr 20, 2006 District of Columbia

    Pretty much all the stores I buy my limited releases from are places in which I trust and have developed good friendships with the owner/beer buyer. I'm cool with them getting first dibs on their stuff. The only time I was really pissed off was when our area got their allotment of BCBVS back in the day, a local Whole Foods in my area told all their loyal customers (including me) they would hold a bottle for us as we called in on a first come, first serve basis. At the last second, they had a change of heart and kept the allotment all to themselves. Kind of a dick move if you ask me. A lot of us don't go there anymore.
  8. loafinaround

    loafinaround Jul 16, 2011 New York

    A shop owner by me actually didn't drink a single bcbs bottle until last week, saving EVERYTHING for his customers. I basically insisted that he enjoy some of the perks of his profession and at least try the gems he's selling to us.
    Chaney likes this.
  9. Sarlacc83

    Sarlacc83 Mar 2, 2008 Oregon

    So your point is they didn't order nearly enough of a readily available product, correct?
  10. cactusleon

    cactusleon Mar 4, 2006 New Jersey

    i dont think any store in NJ was given more than 2 cases of Sucks
  11. ao125

    ao125 Dec 1, 2010 Virginia

    They also work a crap hourly job, selling beer.
  12. PeterJ

    PeterJ Dec 5, 2012 California

    Perks of the job is that the owner can do whatever he decides to do with his bottles.

    Example- Somebody came to buy a rare bottle of beer from me. I said we were sold out, because we were. Then somebody else came who I felt bad for and sold them the one bottle I stashed for myself. Then I was called a liar for saying it was sold out when it really wasn't. WTF is up with the sense of entitlement here? I'm supposed to tell my loyal employees that they can't buy a single bottle of something because you want it more? No way. Sorry, it doesn't work like that. Just like good customers get rewarded and good stores get rewarded, good employees get rewarded.
    Store/bar owners and employees are the ones that get craft beer in peoples hands. They get first shot for a reason.
    nanobrew, RBCORCORAN and aasher like this.
  13. PeterJ

    PeterJ Dec 5, 2012 California

    So say your store gets 12 bottles of rare beer and 3 employees want a bottle. You would rather have 3 pissed off employees and 9 happy customers?
  14. leedorham

    leedorham Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    Well there's that too, but really I was pointing out that being one of eight people to get any in-demand product should be seen as a nice little bit of serendipity. If you don't get it, oh well.

    It's like getting Pearl Jam tickets. If you happen to refresh the web page or make the phone call at just the right moment, good for you.
    LeRose likes this.
  15. pepsican

    pepsican Nov 5, 2007 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    It's really a non issue at the store I work at. Most employees don't follow beer rating websites and drink based on what's good to them. Sure, releases like hopslam and BCS you'll see a few of us walk out of the door with a case or a few four packs, but that's always been the case. Still plenty on the shelves for everyone else.

    As far as employees vs. customers, you'll make people mad no matter how you do it. When you get in 2 cases total of a beer that 200 people want, it's more headache than it's really worth.
    RBCORCORAN likes this.
  16. digdug1810

    digdug1810 Mar 1, 2011 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    yeah i'd say that's pretty close, i know a store that got 3.. but am not aware of a store that got more than that.
  17. JoeyDankNug

    JoeyDankNug Aug 4, 2011 New York

    It would depend on who that employee was and how long he had been with me but for the most part yeah.no customers no employees
  18. digdug1810

    digdug1810 Mar 1, 2011 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    the employees don't pay the bills they are actually a cost to the company they can also be replaced, such is the way it goes... you start loosing customers/get a bad wrap and people will take their business elsewhere and not just their special allotment business, all business. Employee's are still customers but they should receive no greater treatment than that of the customer imo, if it's the owner or the person footing the bill to run the business.. that's a different story they can do as they damn well please, they are the boss and are responsible for their actions.

    it's still two and one half dozen to the other, shit in one hand wish in the other and see what gets filled first, whatever the store is going to do is what they are going to do, take your business elsewhere if you don't like what they do, that's the only power we as customers have.. or we can all sit here and bitch ad nausea which brings about now change for the most part
    zach60614 likes this.
  19. Docrock

    Docrock Jan 21, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    I don't have a problem with an employee being able to buy anything from there place of employment. But if I was a Manager at said store I would start tracking what was going on. The stores by me the employees get 30% off retail and they are generally subject to the same limits as buying public. But when the Westy bricks came out, 20% of the shipment was purchased by staff and that includes all the winies who don't even drink beer or know what a Westy is, they were muling for other store employees.

    At some point when you piss off enough customers, they will stop coming to your store. I have two stores less than 2 miles away that I will never buy from again. The other store just over 2 miles away gets a ton of business from me and I even return the favor, gave their beer guy a bottle of Black Note since he only got one himself. I Had extra purchased from the Brewery.
    Andygirl likes this.
  20. draheim

    draheim Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Looking at that a little differently, say the store puts a one- or two-bottle limit on the same allocation of beer.
    Presto! 48 or 24 people get a bottle or two.

    All these people talking about buying entire cases of some limited beer are making me feel a little sick to my stomach.
    Errto and fishtremble like this.
  21. aasher

    aasher Jan 27, 2010 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    Splitting up four or six packs doesn't do anyone a favor.
    YogiBeer and ncaudle like this.
  22. leedorham

    leedorham Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    OP said it was a one 6-pack limit. That seems reasonable for 12oz bottles of a DIPA.
  23. cactusleon

    cactusleon Mar 4, 2006 New Jersey

    hence the reason why i wasnt greatly upset or angry, i knew there was little to go around, i just know this happens quite a bit just wanted some opinions
  24. pepsican

    pepsican Nov 5, 2007 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Why? Customers do this all of the time when/if they can. Hell, people around these parts follow the trucks to each store and purchase whatever they can then on to the next store. While our beer guys are unloading the trucks, putting stuff on shelves, etc. the entire stock is getting bought up by people all over town.

    A good example would be the hopslam release last week. If we had our two beer guys on staff (I forget if we did or not), they would have no chance of buying it had they not been allowed to at work. Most if not all places sold out of within a few hours before being dropped off, probably before of our beer trucks were unloaded for the day. We are talking a release of 20 to 60 cases per store. I don't think our staff getting 3% of our allotment was a big deal, but maybe it is to some people.
  25. Siggy125

    Siggy125 Nov 10, 2006 California
    Beer Trader

    But he's advantaged by knowing it's available in the back room well before any consumer. Now, if a rule existed that an employee cannot grab a bottle before it's placed on the shelf, it would be way more fair.
    Andygirl likes this.
  26. draheim

    draheim Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    If it's that limited, I'd say it does about 40 people a favor.
    I agree, but bottle shops are also free to break up 4- or 6-packs if it's really that limited, in the interest of spreading it around to more customers. I'd rather make the trek to a shop where my chances of getting a bottle are made higher by pretty strict limits. I'm also more likely to buy a few other beers while I'm there if I haven't blown all my beer money on a single release.
  27. QuadrantThree

    QuadrantThree Aug 14, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    Ya, so employees don't appear to be normal customers in this scenario, maybe only about 60% of a normal customer. They wait in line for a month, awesome.
    aasher likes this.
  28. bostonbro5

    bostonbro5 Jan 6, 2011 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Seriously, what store in NJ? I had no problem finding Sucks in several stores around me. Total Wine does blow ass, I will seriously never shop again at the one in Union. Every fucking good release I get the answer "we don't have it" or "we never got it" despite the fact that their online website shows in stock and allows me to order it. I remember asking about 120 minute a while ago right when it was delivered by Hunterdon to be told" Pfft, we didn't even put that on the shelves". Any business that allows their employees to buy all the stock is making a god awful business decision. Employees do not pay the bills, customer do...
  29. nachos

    nachos Jun 4, 2012 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Newsflash people: life is not fair. Some people get stuff, others don't. Deal with it, grow up, and move on, you'll be much happier. It is a limited release, not everyone is going to end up happy.
    hokiechef and RBCORCORAN like this.
  30. aasher

    aasher Jan 27, 2010 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    Some weeks we get one case of Zombie Dust. The backlash for something like that isn't pretty. It's bad enough when people are bad mouthing stores for splitting up KBS or BCBS.
  31. draheim

    draheim Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    I think avoiding another thread like this one is more than enough reason.

    I've heard enough about truck chasers and other shenanigans, and in my opinion it's probably the most shameful, ridiculous aspect of the whole craft beer thing. It's greed at its basest form. I'm just thankful that this kind of behavior is pretty limited where I live, and pray to God it stays that way. Sure it probably happens here too, but if you make a reasonable amount of effort it's not that hard to track down most of the limited-release beers you want to. I can't think of many that I've missed, and I'm not even all that hardcore.
  32. PeterJ

    PeterJ Dec 5, 2012 California

    Are you a store owner? Do you have employees?
  33. OneBeertoRTA

    OneBeertoRTA Jan 2, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Pretty sure I can drive to one of the 10 awesome breweries in San Diego area and get fresher and more limited beers than your bottle shop. If all store owners had your attitude that's what I would do.
    aasher likes this.
  34. PeterJ

    PeterJ Dec 5, 2012 California

    My employees that care have been with me for at LEAST 6 years. We work together on a daily basis. I trust them with huge amounts of money. Huge. We've spent Christmas Eve, Thanksgiving, and other holidays working together. We cover for each other when we have to. We are all friends. And you want me to tell them no (insert whale here) because a few people will feel left out?! Not happening. Happy employees=good business. With limited releases you WILL piss people off no matter what you do, and I'm not gonna let it be someone who has been helping me for years.
  35. PeterJ

    PeterJ Dec 5, 2012 California

    You're luckier than most. San Diego is an amazing place for craft beer and is the exception, not the rule. Sure you can get more limited San Diego beers but what do you do when you want to drink something else? Which SD brewery sold you the Wooden Hell in your avatar? What attitude are you referring to? That store employees should be allowed to buy a bottle of limited release beer?
    davemike2112 likes this.
  36. zach60614

    zach60614 May 1, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    The problem with this line of reasoning is unskilled labor is really like an interchangeable part. Fringe or any other kind of benefits are unnecessary.
    OneBeertoRTA and FEUO like this.
  37. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Why are shops in business? To make money. Obviously.
    Things that get this accomplished are repeat business and loyal customers. This can be achieved through decent (and as fair as possible) distribution of LE releases.
    I also agree that a happy workforce is a productive one. But you shouldn't have to buy their engagement with all the limited releases they want. If there is a structured and transparent reward system in place that would be pretty cool.
  38. reverseapachemaster

    reverseapachemaster Sep 21, 2012 Texas

    It sucks that there are people who have an opportunity to buy the beer before you can get to it but it's not like the employees are the only ones getting access to buy before the common customer. The owners could buy it up themselves, they could sell it to their friends first, friends of other vendors, more loyal customers than you, etc. Sometimes there are just perks of who you are, where you work and who you know that other people don't have. It's just how it is. You wouldn't bitch about it if you were the one getting the perks over others.

    I can understand the point about rubbing customers the wrong way about letting the employees get the beer first but the store owners are picking which customers they prefer. In most retail businesses the employees end up doing a significant amount of shopping for whatever goods the store sells at the store, if only for convenience. That's why most stores give employees discounts. It's the easiest and most loyal customer base you can have. The employees probably also have friends who come shop there because they work there, etc. It is almost certain that the employees give the owner more business than you ever will.
  39. leedorham

    leedorham Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    Really? You ever manage a team of unskilled workers? You find out pretty quick that they are not so interchangeable as your average CFO likes to think.
  40. Catchy_Name

    Catchy_Name Dec 21, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    I could definitely agree with having that rule for sure.
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