Even if you don't like whiskey, it's a shame to see that many dollars worth of "history" just go down the drain.
Historic Whiskey May Be Poured Down the Drain for Being Sold Without a License
Friday, November 16, 2007
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Here's a sobering thought: Hundreds of bottles of Jack Daniel's whiskey, some of it almost 100 years old, may be unceremoniously poured down a drain because authorities suspect it was being sold by someone without a license.
Officials seized 2,400 bottles late last month during warehouse raids in Nashville and Lynchburg, the southern Tennessee town where the whiskey is distilled.
"Punish the person, not the whiskey," said an outraged Kyle MacDonald, 28, a Jack Daniel's drinker from British Columbia who promotes the whiskey on his blog. "Jack never did anything wrong, and the whiskey itself is innocent."
Investigators are also looking into whether some of the bottles had been stolen from the distillery. No one has been arrested.
Authorities are still determining how much of the liquor will be disposed of, and how much can be sold at auction.
Tennessee law requires officials to destroy whiskey that cannot be sold legally in the state, such as bottles designed for sale overseas and those with broken seals.
"We'd pour it out," said Danielle Elks, executive director of the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
The estimated value of the liquor is $1 million, possibly driven up by the value of the antique bottles, which range from 3-liter bottles to half-pints.
One seized bottle dates to 1914, with its seal unbroken. Elks said it is worth $10,000 on the collectors market. Investigators are looking into whether the liquor was being sold for the value of the bottles rather than the whiskey.
"Someone was making a great deal of profit," she said.
Tennessee whiskeys age in charred white oak barrels, but the maturing process that gives them character mostly stops when it is bottled. A bottled whiskey can deteriorate over a long period of time, especially if it is opened or exposed to sunlight and heat.
Christopher Carlsson, a spirits connoisseur and collector in Rochester, N.Y., said old vintages of whiskey in their original containers are highly prized.
"A lot of these bottles are priceless," he said. "It's like having a rare painting. It's heavily collected."
The raids, prompted by a tip, were conducted at two warehouses and a home in Lynchburg, about 65 miles southeast of Nashville. Another raid was at a Nashville hotel room where drinks were being served and bottles were being sold.
For now, the whiskey is being stored in a Nashville vault.
Elks acknowledged that pouring out the whiskey would not be a happy hour for her.
"It'd kill me," she said.
Here's a case where idiotic bureaucracy may triumph over common sense.
The State of Tenneesee should auction off the collection, the money collected could be used for a number of programs.
That's EXACTLY what I had thought, Gonz.
I'll drink to that! :D
Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo
What ticks me off is that they're not talking chump change - this is some serious money. If they can't auction the whiskey if the seal has been broken, pour out the whiskey and sell the bottle (apologies to Mr. Jack Daniels who is probably spinning in his grave). If a bottle lacks a tax stamp, require purchase of the stamp on top of the auction price. This ain't rocket science.
You are correct, Rocket Science it ain't. But the notion that someone in Government might be able to interject common sense into this fiasco is a novel idea......... :eek: :eek: :eek:
Seriously, the State of Tennessee should act to maximize the benefit to the State in matters of this sort. The scenario in the News Story outlines a needless waste in progress.
Man.....this totally sucks! Jack and Pepsi is my favorite cocktail. It would really be a shame if they pour this great whiskey down the drain.
Sounds simple, but the word of law is the word of law. if they are required to distroy the alcoholic beverage they are going to have to follow the rule of law. Would help the coffers to sell the stuff at auction, but they can't just disobay the law.
Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo
* bows head for a moment of silence for such loss*:(
Similar ridiculous case:
In NJ, the state is required to destroy firearms that have been siezed in crimes or as a result of DV RO's. The premise being, I believe, is that these weapons cannot be legally transferred to another party under the laws of the State.
On two occassions, I traveled to a foundry and assisted in dumping thousands of firearms-handguns and long guns-into the foundry furnace to be melted down into whatever a foundry melts stuff into. These included high-priced collectors guns and antiques.
Seemed like such a waste of money. They could have legally auctioned the weapons off and made a pretty nice chunk of change for the county. But, you know, guns kill. So we had to get them off the street forever.
I see counties around here do this all the time, and it does exactly that, makes a pretty nice chunk of change. Of course, all bidders must have background checks, etc. I do believe they destroy any guns where serial numbers have been removed, but the rest get sold and put into the bank for the county. Seems like common sense to me.
Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI