I-1183 changed the way you buy liquor, LiquorExchange.org makes it easier

I-1183 changed the way you buy liquor, LiquorExchange.org makes it easier

The passage of I-1183 in Washington empowers restaurants, hotels and other establishments to purchase directly from manufacturers, a larger group of distributors and an array of local craft distilleries. It’s a time of transition, excitement and even uncertainty for many liquor licensees; but LiquorExchange.org, a new search tool powered by the Washington Restaurant Association, aims to simplify the adjustment phase.

Under the previous system of liquor sales and distribution, all products came from Washington’s state-run liquor stores. Thanks to the newly privatized system, liquor licensees will enjoy the benefits of the competitive free market when purchasing their liquor supply. At the outset of this transition, the Washington Restaurant Association immediately recognized that liquor licensees at restaurants, bars and taverns would need a concise and easy-to-use resource for determining where to purchase their spirits and liquor stock.

From that realization, LiquorExchange.org was developed, giving WRA members the capability to search by brand, liquor type or keyword, and allowing them access to the best product and partner matches for their business.

Washington state already has dynamic wine and micro-brew communities, and new craft distilleries/distributors are popping up all over the region to serve the discerning tastes of consumers and businesses. LiquorExchange.org gives restaurants access to all of them in a comprehensive and easy-to-use format.

“LiquorExchange.org is a great way for restaurants to obtain the best products and pricing for spirits in Washington state,” said Lex Nepomuceno, WRA director of communications and technology. “Washingtonians have a proud history of supporting great quality, local products. It happened with micro-brews, and then we saw an exponential growth of local wineries throughout the state.”

To that end, Nepomuceno noted that when Costco launched its “Kirkland” label liquor brands in the state, many customers and businesses may view it as a local brand and preferred option for well and mixed drinks.

“Even local distributors will benefit because it puts their liquor portfolio on the same level as one of the big distributors,” Nepomuceno explained. “Why should restaurants pay more for a national, mass-produced vodka when they can get better quality at a lower price from a local company?”

As a member-only benefit, LiquorExchange.org features free registration for all WRA members. While non-members are listed at LiquorExchange.org, WRA allied members have the option of including a detailed in-depth list of all the brands and varieties of alcohol they carry, as well as information on specials and promotions they may be offering. WRA members also enjoy the competitive advantage of priority placement on the site. Additionally, sponsorship opportunities also are available at LiquorExchange.org, giving a company the benefit of coming up first within a given search.

This emerging technology is poised to simplify and transform the way Washington state buys liquor. Visit LiquorExchange.org today, and see how it can help your business.

(Source: Washington Restaurant Magazine, Written by Heather Donahoe)