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George T. Stagg - european pricing?

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George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Jan » Tue Apr 11, 2006 7:45 pm

Hi all

A question for those knowledgeable on bourbon.

I just received a newsletter from a liquorist advertising that they have a small quantity of George T Stagg:

15 Year-old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey from Buffalo Trace's Antique Collection.

George T Stagg 3rd release 65,9%

Georg T Stagg 4th release 70,6 %


The asking price is DKK 1495,- ($243 / £139,-)

And now for my question:

I seem to recall George T Stagg mentioned previously here at the forums, at around $50,- in the US. And while prices of whisky are somewhat on the high side here in DK, this still seems like a rather large difference.

So is this the same Stagg, as available in the US? And is this the normal pricelevel in europe?

(This liquorist is not generally known for excessive pricing, and they descripe these bottles as a rare find.)

Cheers
Jan
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Postby bamber » Tue Apr 11, 2006 8:31 pm

Well they're now old releases (there have been 3 new ones since the 2004) so I guess he's charging a premium. If you want a current bottling at a better price your best bet is ebay.

The 2004 is very good though. I would go for that over the 2003 if you get impatient.

Retail in the UK, for current releases is £90 - 105.
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Postby jimidrammer » Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:41 pm

The 65.9% abv is the Spring '05 release and the 70.6% abv is the current release and it runs about $43US here. I haven't opened my newest release bottles yet, but I'm sure they are consistent. I've noticed Bourbons increase in price when exported elsewhere about as much as Scotch does when it gets here. :(
It is one of the best Bourbons out, IMHO. If you can get Booker's Bourbon at a more reasonable price, it is of comparable quality.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Tue Apr 11, 2006 11:12 pm

FYI -- Stagg releases:

Fall 2002 -- 137.6 proof (68.6% abv)
Fall 2003 -- 142.7 proof (71.35% abv)
Fall 2004 -- 129 proof (64.5% abv)
Spring 2005 -- 131.8 proof (general, 65.9% abv), 130.9 proof (Kentucky only, 65.45% abv)
Fall 2005 -- 141.2 proof (70.6% abv)

So, this store has the fourth and fifth issues.

Demand, especially from overseas, has driven prices up a bit -- to the $60 range here and there -- but the two 2005 issues total almost 20,000 bottles between them, alleviating some of that pressure.
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Postby Di Blasi » Wed Apr 12, 2006 1:10 am

I feel lucky then to have bought a bottle of the 2004 release, 64,5% a few weeks back. I knew I should have bought another one! (The one Jim Murray gives 97 points to!) It was 59$, so if you do the math Jan, damn, you are spending too much! Unless you can afford it, and have no other way of getting a bottle from the US, (especially with the exchange rate these days), buy it! Cause it's good! I tasted it twice and WOW!
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Postby Jan » Wed Apr 12, 2006 9:10 am

I actually tasted my first small batch bourbon yesterday; Bookers, which I liked a lot.

And as this is available at less than half the price of the Stagg, I think I will try to secure a bottle of this instead. Will have to wait a couple of weeks, though, as finances are a bit low at the moment. :(

Thanks for the feedback.

Cheers
Jan
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Postby bamber » Wed Apr 12, 2006 9:38 am

IMO Stagg is in a different league to Bookers.

Not everyone agrees though.
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Postby Di Blasi » Wed Apr 12, 2006 11:26 am

Yes, honestly, the Stagg is unbelievable! The alcohol hits you, wakes you up, but is well balanced and amazing, to be enjoyed in very small amounts!
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby lohssanami » Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:32 pm

I just saw one on a shelf last weekend for $59.99, and it was (I believe) 72.4% ABV. Is this still a great deal more expensive in Europe?

How do you guys like the flavors, and do they get through the high alcohol content?
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Di Blasi » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:02 pm

lohssanami wrote:I just saw one on a shelf last weekend for $59.99, and it was (I believe) 72.4% ABV. Is this still a great deal more expensive in Europe?

How do you guys like the flavors, and do they get through the high alcohol content?


It's an awesome Bourbon, and a must taste even at that alcohol level! Then I add a bit of water until it's right. If I were you lohssanami I'd stock up, a few, at least of each various bottling. At 59.99$ it's a giveaway. I've seen it for 100£ in a few places, translating to almost 200$.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Ganga » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:03 pm

I've had a couple of the Stagg's. I must say I really enjoy this whiskey. lohssanami, definitely worth the $60.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Newbie » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:16 pm

Staggs are only $60 in the USA!?!?!? Wished I picked one up last year when I went over !!!

Saw one in London over the weekend and it was £110 in the whisky exchange if I remember correctly!!!

At 70%+ it definitely seems interesting!!! Any of our US friends want to do a trade :wink:

I'll send you a bottle of Aberlour Abundah #22 for a bottle of Stagg in return :lol:
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby lohssanami » Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:04 pm

Are there higher taxes for the higher ABV? Or is it just that the UK charges more per demand?
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Laphroaig » Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:06 pm

The 2004 can still be found for less than $50 US (in the US). The 2005 is still around as well for just about $50 (last I saw it was $48.50 on a local shelf).

Of course there is crazy demand but there is a lot of politics involved with the distribution process of not just GTS but the entire Antique Collection.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Di Blasi » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:31 pm

Laphroaig wrote:The 2004 can still be found for less than $50 US (in the US). The 2005 is still around as well for just about $50 (last I saw it was $48.50 on a local shelf).

Of course there is crazy demand but there is a lot of politics involved with the distribution process of not just GTS but the entire Antique Collection.


The lower price might be because they've been on the shelves since the release, so the price hasn't been raised. I used to love finding bottles on the shelf that were forgotten, with prices much lower than their newer released siblings.
lohssanami, here in Norway the taxes are based on the alcohol content, but anything over 60% is narcotics and can only be distributed by a chemist!
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby lohssanami » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:49 pm

Di Blasi wrote:...here in Norway the taxes are based on the alcohol content, but anything over 60% is narcotics and can only be distributed by a chemist!


Ouch...so probably severe penalties for trying to ship anything higher, such as a PC5 (63.5), Old Portrero (~61), and especially Stagg (72.4). Do they just confiscate or prosecute?

I might know a chemist that can ship...haha.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Laphroaig » Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:09 pm

Di Blasi wrote:The lower price might be because they've been on the shelves since the release, so the price hasn't been raised.
Correct, the merchant is fair and keeps the prices fairly respectful.

It's also important to note that since the first release of GTS, the wholesale cost of the Antique Collection has risen what appears somewhere between 40-60% in small incremental jumps yearly. The original release in 2002 I saw for sale as cheap as $29.99 the Old Weller 19 year old also was around at that insane price (but back then it was just a damn GOOD price).

I'm sure the cost of fuel / transportation has also contributed as products period are increasing in cost, the Antique Collection has the advantage of re-introducing itself annually while increasing a few bucks at each introduction... but with the weak dollar - I'm surprised that Stagg etc. are commanding such prices in Europe right now.

Less than 2 years ago, the Exchange was still carrying the discontinued Weller 19 (much more sought after than GTS imho) for £49, if my memory serves me correctly. It jumped to £89 not long after that and Antique Collection prices seem to have not looked back since.

FWIW, you might just look into Blanton's barrel strength if you're dying to get a marginal idea of GTS' appeal... minus the long line and discerning crowds. :headbang:
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Bob O. » Mon Jan 28, 2008 10:56 pm

lohssanami wrote:I just saw one on a shelf last weekend for $59.99, and it was (I believe) 72.4% ABV. Is this still a great deal more expensive in Europe?

How do you guys like the flavors, and do they get through the high alcohol content?

That is the 2007 release, I would definitely pick it up. I have one unopened. I also have a Fall 2005 and 2006. The 2005 is the only one currently opened. Fantastic whiskey, obviously a little goes a long way.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Willie JJ » Mon Jan 28, 2008 11:11 pm

The price of the Stagg here is outrageous. The Whisky Exchange have 4 bottlings ranging from £99-£150. I feel like jumping on a plane and bringing back a case.

Having said that, single cask or CS bourbon is, in general, not cheap here. I suspect it is being imported in such small quantities that they can hold us to ransom. It's very frustrating though.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby woodhill » Mon Jan 28, 2008 11:59 pm

Anyone know anywhere in New Jersey where this can be bought?

I may just have to get my brother to "import" me a couple of bottles.

:thumbsup:
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Ganga » Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:52 am

Try sending a PM to LSD. He seems to know the area around the mid-Atlantic states.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby jimidrammer » Tue Jan 29, 2008 4:32 pm

The abv of Stagg has reportedly been made illegal to ship or carry on a plane. Hazmat issues for the ones over 70%, I believe. But they had to get overseas somehow. Anyone want to clarify?
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Laphroaig » Tue Jan 29, 2008 5:22 pm

Planes (commercial and carrier) carry Haz Mats from what I understand but the materials must be declared as such, handled accordingly and meet storage provisions etc.

Several things... The post office won't accept liquor in most cases if you declare the contents as such, most carriers won't either - unless you have a license or some certification to sell / distribute to the territory / entity of destination... (this was my understanding of things but it's not scientific so someone who actually is in the loop please do comment / correct).

Without proper certification it is illegal to ship liquor (I think even wine or beer) across state lines. Flying with it seems to be fine (under a certain alcohol percentage and with in volume restrictions mandated per state or country of destination).

The Antique Collection (includes George T. Stagg) has it's proof hand-printed with a paint marker - not silk screened or machine printed on a label. At a glance, I'm guessing a TSA agent or customs officer who found this detail without holding up the line is A) one of the most diligent & dedicated staff members on the planet, B) had a hard-on from the get go for the person carrying, or C) is a drunkard who knows his or her stuff.
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Re: George T. Stagg - european pricing?

Postby Laphroaig » Tue Jan 29, 2008 6:01 pm

Just to clarify, there's only been one Spring release ever and it was said that they found more Stagg that was forgotten about or overlooked in a warehouse. :thumbsup:

I'm no genius but I'm pretty certain there are NO barrels of whiskey that are designated "George T. Stagg" in any of the various warehouses in Buffalo Trace's ownership.

The forgotten, but just discovered barrels in the warehouse, story, at least to me, reads: They had some 15 year old whiskey they felt they needed to bottle and get rid of at that time, and decided it best bottled at full strength as GTS.

Other than that one anomaly, the entire Antique Collection is released (1) time during the fall of each year. How it (the entire collection) is distributed and trickles to shelves and various markets might give the impression there are multiple releases, but to the best of my knowledge that's incorrect.
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