Big whisky retailer news: Binny’s buys Sam’sOctober 9th, 2009
The two big Chicago retailers where enthusiasts have been buying whisky are Binny’s and Sam’s. Rumors have been floating around for a while that Binny’s was going to buy Sam’s. It’s now a done deal. The Chicago Tribune has the details here.
I remember shopping for whisky back in the early 1990s, and Sam’s was the place to buy whisky. That was back when “Joe C.” was in charge of buying and selling the whiskies. Sam’s had the SELECTION and GOOD PRICES–and Joe C.’s friendly and knowledgeable guidance.
But Binny’s gradually gained the momentum. Joe C. left Sam’s and began working for Binny’s. It was like Sam’s didn’t even care anymore about being a place for specialty whiskies. This past decade, it was clear that Binny’s was now the new leader. If you wanted a rare whisky–at a good price–Binny’s was now the place to shop. Brett Pontoni was (and still is) the man carrying the whisky torch at Binny’s.
Why is this buy-out so important to you if you don’t live in Chicago? Well, these days you can order whisky just anywhere via the internet. Competition keeps prices in check. Binny’s and Sam’s have been in competition for a long time, and the prices and selection of whiskies in Chicago have always been great, largely because of this competition.
I would like to offer my congratulations to Binny’s. Well deserved! I just hope that this buy-out doesn’t affect whisky prices at Binny’s in the coming years.