Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pittsburgh, PA - RUM Finds

The family traveled to Pittsburgh, PA for Easter again this year. It's our third Easter with our best friends The Lizottes. They actually live in Murraysville, East of Pittsburgh so we hit some local Spirit stores to see what we could find.

Buying RUM in PA is like shopping in no other place. The state (PLCB - Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board) controls EVERYTHING. What's sold, the stores it's sold in, etc. They maintain and publish an "official list" of spirits, wines, etc. available in PA online here. You can only buy what they authorize; that's it. Their monopoly is interesting to read about (from Wiki-Pedia):

The PLCB holds monopolist rights to the distribution of all wines and hard liquor in the commonwealth. To this end, the agency owns and operates Wine & Spirits retail locations, commonly referred to as "state stores," in all 67 counties. This government corporation is the largest purchaser of wine and liquor in the United States and second in the world after the Liquor Control Board of Ontario.

This monolithic control SEVERELY limits the brands stocked within the state and greatly favors large RUM distilleries like Bacardi and Cruzan. So, what I found on our outings was of very little variance between stores.

Special RUMs I did buy: Ron Rico Pineapple/Coconut Rum, Strohs "80" (160 proof)

Special RUMs I didn't buy: Sea Wynde

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