The 2018 Retailers of the Year Part 6

Winners We Recently Covered

These retailers were featured in last years awards coverage (or in a recent issue of Beverage Dynamics). To read their full profiles, visit BeverageDynamics.com.

The Wine Store

  • Westerly, RI
  • 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: One
  • Average Store Size: 3,200 square-feet
  • Founded: 1984

Online Strategy: Create a safe and secure online shopping experience for customers and offer products to a larger audience. We offer all products for purchase online for local delivery and in-store pickup. We also ship nationally where permitted. Our email list is developed through store sign-ups and social media. Subscribers are sent promotions weekly and monthly, with marketing tied into our social media postings and other advertising.

Community Involvement: Partnership with the Westerly Armory Restoration by donating product for fundraising events. We also held a fundraiser for the Westerly Land Trust and donated to the 125th anniversary of the Westerly Library event.

Jubilation Wine and Spirits

  • Albuquerque, NM
  • 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: One
  • Average Store Size: 6,000 square-feet
  • Founded: 1944

Community Involvement: Our customers know that if theyre passionate about a particular charitable organization well help them by donating a raffle item, attending an event or even giving our time and energy to plan a fundraiser. Giving back to the community that supports us is an important aspect of our business.

Differentiators: We are one of the only retailers in New Mexico that has a growler fill station system. We have eight taps and pride ourselves on offering local and eclectic brews that are not bottled or canned. Our wine club membership now includes more than 250 customers, and we offer them wines that are brought into New Mexico exclusively for us. We can also act on new products and get them into the market first because of our size. We sell products that arent in the big box stores, but we can sell a lot of volume. Wholesalers come to us first because they know we bring customers in the door to taste through our marketing plans, email promotions and social media engagement.

Acme Liquor Store

  • Crested Butte, CO
  • 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: One
  • Average Store Size: 4,300 square-feet
  • Founded: 1970

Recent Improvements: In the past year, weve improved video surveillance, product selection, delivery options, online ordering and massively increased our social media presence. Theres also been more interaction with customers, the introduction of in-store tastings and increased staff exposure to industry events like wine tastings, sommelier courses and the like.

Differentiators: Location, selection and customer service. We also happen to have the cleanest, most well-lit, organized store with the most refrigeration in the country. Customers enjoy a walk-in white wine cooler and 20 beer doors. Our upstairs storage, fed by an old coal mine conveyor belt, also allows us to buy and store product in quantities and discounts that competitors cant.

Timers Beverage Center

  • Racine, Wisconsin
  • 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: One
  • Average Store Size: 12,000 square-feet
  • Founded: 1926

Online Strategy: We use Instrgram, Facebook and a private customer email list. We feature products periodically and include our monthly ad on our website. We take pre-orders for special releases via email. In email, we focus mostly on wines by offering discounted prices compared to whats in the store.

Community Involvement: We raised almost $10,000 this year for the Racine Zoo and Big Brothers Big Sisters combined. We also assist other charities with wine tastings and fundraising donations.

The Fridge Wholesale Liquor

  • Manhattan, Kansas
  • 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: One
  • Average Store Size: 10,000 square-feet
  • Founded: 2001

Recent Improvements: Weve upgraded all of our in-store lighting to LED. We also purchased three new delivery vehicles, installed a new POS system and added in-store advertising using Sellr.

Community Involvement: Last year we gave $25,000 to local organizations, ranging from little league teams to the Flint Hills Breadbasket. Were well-known for providing product and funds for local charity events. Weve won a Purple Apple award for top retail liquor store six years in a row, which is voted on by KSU staff and students. Weve also been Readers Choice for top retail store in the past five years in our local newspaper.

Garys Wine & Marketplace

  • Wayne, NJ
  • 2012 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: 5
  • Average Store Size: 13,000 square-feet
  • Founded: 1987

Loyalty Program: Benefits to members include bonus savings coupons, invitations to special events, access to an individualized Garys portfolio that tracks past purchases and more. Any customer can join for free.

Online Strategy: Were looking to promote the Garys Experience online by sharing the enormous wealth of knowledge we offer with everyone. One of our most successful campaigns promoted Garys 30th Anniversary using content online, via social media and through TV advertising. It reminded the community that Garys is a trusted resource and promotes the best selection.

More Info: Read all about Garys Wine & Marketplace in the March/April 2018 issue of Beverage Dynamics.

Twin Liquors

  • Austin, Texas
  • 2010, 2017 and 2018 Winner
  • Locations: 80
  • Average Store Size: 3,500 square-feet
  • Founded: 1937

Advertising & Promotions: The Dollar Sale occurs twice a year in February and August. This Black Friday of wines and spirits is a longstanding tradition created by the Jabour family as a simple token of gratitude to patrons for shopping with Twin Liquors. All prices are dropped to the wholesale price, plus $1.

Community Involvement: Twin Liquors gives to approximately 400 events and organizations annually. The neighborhood feel of our locations and our connection to the community through charity is what sets us apart.

Garfields Beverage Warehouse

  • Norridge, IL
  • 2018 Winner
  • Locations: 6
  • Average Store Size:
  • 10,000 square-feet
  • Founded: 1951

Recent Improvements: Within the last year weve upgraded our POS and back-end management software. We now have a centralized database thanks to upgrades to our inventory management throughout the chain. Were in the final stages of a new e-commerce build-out, and were constantly improving our product selection and shelf sets. Were always undergoing resets to stay ahead of market trends.

Differentiators: Weve built our business on three main pillars: customer service, competitive pricing and product selection. We find that gives the customer the shopping experience theyre looking for. Most of our customers know us by name, which helps in creating a family atmosphere. We dont want to be a big box store and were always sure to maintain our roots.

Winners Over the Years

In the modern history of Beverage Dynamics Retailers of the Year program, industry icons from across the country have been named winners. From 1996 to 2015, one winner was chosen each year. Since then, the program has expanded to represent the full array of businesses within the off-premise industry. The following companies were chosen as the best of the best during the past two decades.

2017:

  • Acme Liquor Store (CO)
  • Bay Ridge Wine & Spirits (MD)
  • Boise Co-Op Wine Shop (ID)
  • Fridge Wholesale Liquor (KS)
  • Jubilation Wine & Spirits (NM)
  • Lakeville Liquors (MN)
  • Mayfair Liquors (CO)
  • Mega-Bev (MI)
  • Mount Airy Liquors (MD)
  • Oliver Ts Market (MI)
  • Pecos Liquors (DE)
  • Speakeasy Liquors (IL)
  • Timers Beverage Center (WI)
  • Twin Liquors (TX)
  • The Wine Store (RI)

2016: Cork Liquors (IN), Half Time Beverage (NY)

2015: Trigs Cellar 70 (WI)

2014: Brown Derby (MO)

2013: Premier Wine & Spirits (NY)

2012: Garys Wine & Marketplace (NJ)

2011: The Party Source (KY)

2010: Twin Liquors (TX)

2009: Yankee Spirits (MA)

2008: Total Wine (MD)

2007: Specs Wines, Spirits & Finer Foods (TX)

2006: Berbiglias (MO)

2005: Applejack Wine & Spirits (CO)

2004: Frugal Macdoogals (TN)

2003: Haskells (MN)

2002: Centennial (TX)

2001: Sherry-Lehmann (NY)

2000: Beverages & More (CA)

1999: Prime Wine & Liquor (NY)

1998: Binnys Beverage Depot (IL)

1997: Siegels (TX)

1996: ABC Wine & Spirits (FL)

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