Regulation

Canadian Liquor Police Bash Dan Aykroyd's Skull

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The Liquor Control Board of Ontario has banned Dan Aykroyd's Crystal Head vodka, deeming the bottle to be in poor taste. You might object that LCBO merely has declined to stock the vodka, but since the provincial monopoly is the only legal source of distilled spirits in Ontario, that seems to be a distinction without much of a difference. Aykroyd, an Ontario native, is unperturbed by the ban, which he says "kind of makes the product more appealing." A spokesman explains the LCBO's concerns:

The image of the human skull is the thing that's really problematic for us. That's an image that's commonly associated with death. It's especially problematic at a time when there are concerns around binge drinking by younger adults, which in some cases unfortunately has resulted in alcohol poisoning.

If skull-shaped liquor bottles remind people of death from alcohol poisoning, you might think they'd deter excessive consumption. But public health paternalists argue that death-related imagery, which serves as a warning when used by the government, serves as an enticement when used by marketers, practically daring macho adolescents to consume the product. Hence the controversies over Death cigarettes, a Dutch brand sold in black packages featuring a skull and crossbones, and Black Death vodka, a beet-based Icelandic brand with a black label featuring a grinning skull in a top hat.

Whatever the merits of that argument, it's highly improbable that binge-drinking teenagers (or "young adults") will want to lay out $60 for a bottle of Aykroyd's super-premium vodka when they can get much more buzz for their buck from beer (or cheap vodka). The fundamentally aesthetic nature of the LCBO's concerns is apparent from other examples of products it has refused to sell (cited by Globe and Mail columnist Beppi Crosariol), such as liquor with "sexually degrading labels depicting topless women" and "a vodka brand called Kalishnikov that was presented for sale in a bottle shaped like an AK-47 assault rifle." Applied by a provincial agency that serves as the liquor gatekeeper for all of Ontario, these judgments are a form of state-imposed censorship.

Although Crystal Head vodka is widely available in the U.S., we have our own liquor bottle censors, not just in LCBO-like monopolies (the system used by 18 states at the wholesale and/or retail level) but also in a federal agency that can reject labels it deems misleading, "obscene or indecent," or impermissibly connotative of alcoholic strength. In 1992 the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms tried to block distribution of Black Death vodka on the grounds that its labeling created the misimpression "that the product is inherently unsafe for human consumption at any level" while simultaneously "mock[ing] the real health risks which may result from the consumption of alcohol by making an obviously false claim about the dangers of alcohol consumption," thereby undermining the surgeon general's printed warnings. As I reported in a 1994 Reason article, the vodka's distributor challenged the decision, prompting a ruling in which a federal judge rejected the agency's self-contradictory rationale and noted that "the government's prohibition of the 'Black Death Vodka' label strikes at the heart of the first amendment." But manufacturers and distributors frequently accept the government's arbitrary labeling dictates (such as a command to make the breasts in the drawing of a nude woman on a wine label less "upthrust" and "evident") rather than undergo the expense and uncertainty of a court challenge.

[via Infocult]

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  1. Semi-related:

    Costco backs WA state initiative to end state liquor monopoly

    I don’t buy a lot of liquor, but once in a while I do. It would be nice not having to go to a state agency for that.

    1. I have lived in a blue law state (CT), but even though you couldn’t buy liquor after 8PM or on Sundays or holidays, the stores were all private. Coming to WA was a shocker, because state run liquor stores are fucking awful. At least in New England and NY, the stores would compete for your business by having awesome selection, helpful employees, and competitive prices. WA is like going to the DMV to get some booze.

      1. On the other hand, it’s incredibly convenient and goddamn civilized to be able to pick up beer and wine along with the rest of your groceries. After living in Canada, seeing the awesome wine selection at regular grocery stores (at reasonable prices, no less) was like arriving in the promised land.

        1. Yeah, that is one thing I like about WA. I live near a Central Market which has a great selection of micro brews and wines.

          I moved here from AK, where all alcoholic beverages had to be in a separate, dedicated store. It wasn’t state run, so at least there’s that.

          1. We can only by beer in a grocery store, but it’s legal for our liquor stores to be drive-thru. And it’s all private.

          2. Alcohol is still our #1 Sport, indoor and outdoor! Every spring, dead hobos start popping out of the snow, like crocuses.

        2. We have wine and beer in groceries stores in Florida. Some have liquor stores attached next door.

          1. Maryland is a gerrymandered hell. You can buy beer and wine in a grocery store, but only one store per chain per county (ruminate on the logic of that one for a bit). Only Monkey County has stores where you have to buy your hard liquor, beer and wine can be sold privately, even though you can just go to DC or PG County and buy it there. If you run a pubhouse in Monkey County and brew on-premise you have to sell the beer to the county and buy it back from them. I shit you not.

            I love going to Virginia, just so I can buy chep beer and wine at the Costco in Pentagon City.

            1. Oh, and no hard liquor sales on Sunday at all, in MD.

              1. I bet the goddamn atheists are behind it.

              2. Fairfax has it’s faults (many). but one of it’s features is that it’s not montgomery county.

          2. Yeah, it all depends on the blue laws and liquor regs in each individual county and city throughout the state of Florida.

            Some liquor stores down here aren’t able to open on Sundays until after 3pm; meanwhile, some stores proudly provide post-mass morning drive-thru package services.

        3. Not here in New York. The liquor stores are fighting tooth and nail against a law that would allow supermarkets to sell wine.

      2. The New Hampshire liquor monopoly (which is slowly being dismantled, or at least loosened) is really quite good, as a lot of its business depends on luring customers from neighboring states where liquor is sold in package stores, but taxes are much higher. And they seem to have no problem with stocking bottles shaped like skulls or guns or naked ladies.

        1. And the monopoly is only on distilled spirits.

        2. I’ve mentioned this previously, but my uncle used to work for a NH liquor store. And he was a true salesman – I guarantee he would help a customer find what they need, point out good choices (he certainly knows a few), and probably tell a joke or two. How NH has avoided the “government stores suck” problem, I don’t know, but all my relatives and friends there tell me it has.

          1. They avoided it by being near out-of-state population centers they had to compete for the business of, and realizing they could make their money in profits instead of taxes.

            See, a lot of states that have or had state stores for liquor call them Alcohol Beverage Control facilities, implying up front that they’re there to limit the consumption of liquor. But not even all of those that used that name acted that way. My friends in Bristol went to the Va. side of the city to buy liquor at the ABC rather than buy in Tenn.’s private stores.

            So in short, some states used their monopolies to promote liquor, others to demote it.

            1. Let this also be a lesson for libertarians who reflexively oppose gov’t-operated gambling in states where such gambling is otherwise illegal. Even if it does inhibit later adoption of free-enterprise gambling (and it may not), it may still provide good service — and since far more people want to patronize casinos than operate them, it’s almost as much an advance in liberty as simple repeal would be.

    2. I blame MA liquor laws for giving me alcoholism.

      See, there’s no alcohol sold on Sundays. So I’d stock up on Saturday afternoon. Then, on Saturday night, I’d drink everything in the fridge.

      I spent an entire football season in MA watching games with a hangover, no beer and a terrible craving.

      Hell can’t be much worse.

      1. Chin, I feel the same way. No booze sales on Sunday here and I start panicking Saturday night if I think that I don’t have enough beer or booze on hand to get me and 8 of my friends through a Vikings game the next day.

        My wife thinks I have a problem. I tell her I’m just being prudent.

      2. Absolutely. I grew up in a dry county, so you had to drive about 25 miles to the liquor store. With a 50 mile round trip, you never bought just a six-pack; you stocked up. And once you have a ton of booze, well, you and your buddies tend to drink a ton of booze.

        My first lesson in not just unintended consequences, but flat-out counterproductive results, of Big Nanny.

    3. Feel sorry for you. I can buy beer, wine and liquor at Target…or Wal-Mart..or just about anywhere. In some parishes you can buy it all on Sunday, but in mine, you can only buy beer on Sunday. (I still don’t understand the logic of that one.)And of course, can’t drive more than a few miles without seeing a drive-through daiquiri place.

      1. How I miss home.

      2. Until a few years ago, I had lived in IL – LA – NY in succession, all of which have few restrictions on which establishments sell alcohol (beyond getting a license). I had no idea other states (besides Utah, which is expected) were more restrictive.

        My personal “Welcome To Pennsylvania” moment was at the Walmart customer service desk where the attendant gave me a dirty look when I asked where the beer was.

        1. My mom’s “Welcome to New England” moment came when she realized the waitress was not going to package her mudslide to take home with her.

      3. Maybe if you can only buy beer you won’t be too wasted for church at 10 AM. That’s the best guess I can come up with.

  2. Looks like this eastern european alcoholic (yeah, redundant) has a new vodka to try.

  3. I’m a whiskey/beer drinker, so I must be missing something with vodka.

    Why is vodka the one liquor that seems to be sold based solely on some gimmick (the skull, the AK-47 bottle, clever absolut ads)?

    Is it really impossible to differentiate vodka based on taste and quality?

    1. One would have to drink it straight and tepid to discern any big differences.
      I’ll spend the extra scratch for Bombay Sapphire when buying gin but plain old Smirnoff is just fine even for churchill vodka martinis

      1. Smirnoff wins more awards than any other vodka as I understand it.

    2. “Is it really impossible to differentiate vodka based on taste and quality?”

      Yes.

      1. I’m no expert and drink very little, but I can detect the quality to some degree: the extra filtering of Skyy makes it much less likely to give me a hangover.

        1. Placebo effect. That ‘filtering’ doesn’t do shit for your hangover.

          1. Congeners have a proven effect on hangovers, and the extra filtering really does remove remove them.

        2. Nope. Skyy doesn’t make their own vodka. They buy in bulk from distillers like McCormick. Then run it through their process so they don’t get knocked for false advertising and such. Bam! Skyy vodka.

          1. Well, regardless of who makes it, the removal of the congeners is something I’m pretty sure I can detect, because I seem to be rather sensitive to them.

            1. There’s a difference.

              You need to line up a decent western style vodka, Polish vodka and Russian vodka and sip them neat and chilled. You’ll spot the difference. If it’s to be mixed with other something else, I’m not fussy, but if it’s being drunk straight it has to be a good Polish vodka

    3. As a serious beer drinker/brewer and a novice whiskey drinker, I think along the same lines as you do, Jimbo. That being said, booze journalist and blogger (and occasional Reason citer-toer) Lew Bryson recently posted about vodka and when he says “To call this protean liquor ‘colorless, odorless, and tasteless’ sells it terribly short,” I’m inclined to believe him. I’ll also note that I’ve tried a couple “white whiskeys” lately (Koval’s Rye Chicago being my favorite) and while the flavors are more subtle they’re definitely there. Perhaps we need to start expanding our palates!

      1. Buffalo Trace has started bottling it’s raw mash. We tried a pint of it. It was some rough going.

        1. I actually tried that at Whiskeyfest Chicago and really dug it. It was much sweeter than Koval’s (BT uses both malted barley and corn, while Koval uses neither) but interesting nonetheless.

          1. It was OK, but I’d rather just drink bourbon. Or pure corn whiskey from moonshiners. It is much smoother.

            1. For the record, my taste perception and/or recollection may have been influenced by the copious amounts of whiskey I consumed before and after trying the BT.

              1. (freeze frame)
                Well, ClubMedSux and SugarFree have sure got themselves in a heap of trouble this time…

                1. An old boss of mine once brought in a bottle of caraway-flovored Aquavit for everyone to drink (at work!) It was awesome and I hate caraway.

            2. Where’d you get “pure corn whiskey” from a moonshiner? It’s MUCH more likely that you’d get “pure corn sugar whiskey” from a moonshiner (says a guy who’s sampled a fair amount of mountain dew). Mashing with actual corn, even grits, is a lot of work that moonshiners just aren’t interested in doing. Even bourbon isn’t “pure” corn; more like about 70%, the best being malt and rye or wheat.
              Why people continue to believe that moonshine, made on hand-made stills with inconsistent heat sources out of a farrago of ingredients, is more “pure” than the output of a modern steam-heated still cooking fermented mash made from grain that’s gone through a variety of quality checks…beats the hell out of me.

        2. I tried some at the distillery tour. I though it tasted strangely tequila-ish.

          1. Probably because they’re both unaged spirit (blanco tequila, that is). There’s a vegetative freshness to young spirit; that’s probably what you were tasting.

            1. I made a variation of a margarita using Koval Rye Chicago instead of tequila and lemon instead of lime… I think I still like a blue margarita better (the Koval’s a bit rougher around the edges) but it was a nice change of pace from a traditional margarita.

      2. Bah! I still drink the High Life because it reminds me of my underage glory days drinking in a gravel pit or back woods.

        The only concession I have made in my life is to forswear anything made by the Phillips distilleries.

        In sunny Minnesota, Phillips is THE lowest priced provider of any booze. Tequila? Yup Phillips makes that. Vodka? yup. You think that being able to make so many different types of booze would imply a certain level of skill and quality, but trust me that it does not.

    4. There isn’t much individual taste difference along a price horizontal of the market, but along the price vertical it’s pretty noticeable. Vodka is stupid easy to make, requires no aging or careful mixing, and it’s mostly the cost of filtering that makes the vertical split.

      Same product and same production costs creates a furious attempt to create brand recognition.

      The only vodka (other than mixing) I get is Grey Goose Citroen and I keep it in the freezer for shots.

      1. Actually, really good vodka should not require filtering. They should be throwing away the methanol (which distills prior to ethyl alcohol) and the amyl alcohols, which distill after. Look here under “distilling the wash to see at which temperatures what alcohols are distilled.

        Incidentally, it is because amateur distillers either don’t know to (or are too cheap to) throw away the first few distillates that so much moonshine is poisonous.

        1. You know how hard it is to get a working thermometer out in the woods, boy? My grandpappy sweetened his tea with anti-freeze, you sissy.

      2. I think you mean Grey Goose Citron, unless you drink vodka with the flavor of a French car. :-p

        The first time I tried vodka was when I was studying in Russia back in 1992, on an overnight train from Riga to Sankt Peterburg. The vodka was a brand called “Russkaya Vodka”, which is simply Russian for “Russian Vodka”.

        The other students only had carbonated beverages on the train, and since I don’t like carbonated drinks, the only thing left to chase it down with was Latvian sausage.

        1. No, it’s car-flavored vodka. You are such a rube. 😉

          (Led astray again! Curse you, spellcheck!)

          1. So what does that new-car smell taste like, anyhow?

            1. Ever lick a brake pad?

              1. Is it one of those brake pads that has hallucinogenic properties?

      3. I’ve become partial to Tito’s Vodka (made in Austin, Texas, I believe). Partly because its quite good, and partly because its local-ish.

    5. Vodka should not have any taste, unless it is deliberately flavored. Vodka should be pure ethyl alcohol, without the minute quantities of amyl alcohol that give other alcohols their flavor (again, not counting deliberately flavored alcohols).

      1. Errr, ethyl & water BP, otherwise you have grain alc.
        Even in the glory of youth 180proof was deadly.

        1. Point taken, PicassoIII. Incidentally, ‘vodka’ in Russian means something like “little water” or “water, junior”, giving you an idea of its prominence in the culture.

          1. Bah, the Russkis are punters compared to the Irish. In Gaelic, “whiskey” means “water of life”.

            1. Also, I think whiskey is derived from the Gaelic “water of life.”

              And now for some spamming on behalf of certain interests of mine…

              http://www.oldpogue.com/

              1. Whoops, I should read upthread once in a while…

              2. That reminds me… Isn’t “whisky” Gaelic for “water of life”?

            2. What do you think Aquavit means? 🙂

              1. What do you think Aquavit means?

                “Tastes worse coming back up”

          2. Tak, tse ya rozumiyu. 😉
            My IRL surname has even more consonants.

      2. But it does, inevitably, have some taste that reflects the base fermentable, unless it has been distilled hard and filtered multiple times. It’s subtle, but it’s there, and if you’re sipping it straight, and you’re experienced, it’s unmistakable.
        The regs do also allow the addition of a small amount of sugar; not every vodka maker does.

    6. My understanding is that some of the finer Russian vodkas are much better than most of what is available in the USA.

      My personal experience with vodka, however, involves too many college nights worshipping the porcelain god, so I’m probably not the most dispassionate observer.

    7. Yeah, I really don’t see the point of super premium vodka. There is definitely a big difference between cheap crap and moderately priced decent stuff. But since vodka is essentially alcohol and water, I really don’t see why anyone should pay $30 a bottle for something made in France or in a skull.

  4. This is still less offensive than the federal government putting labels on every piece of our food, cigarettes, alcohol, etc. At least at the provincial or state level we have some genuine control over our elected officials…

  5. Looks like this eastern european alcoholic (yeah, redundant) has a new vodka to try.

    It’s not very good?not $50 good, anyway. The bottle is nice, but it’s really weird in your hand, and it pours faster than you think it will. (Which is nice.) It’s on the same taste “shelf” as Ketel One. That’s, what, $20 a 750ml? But Ketel One is BYO skull.

    Is it really impossible to differentiate vodka based on taste and quality?

    The prices do track quality, but not linearly. 95% of the quality slope comes between wino price and about $30. Past that, you’re buying bottle.

    1. 95% of the quality slope comes between wino price and about $30. Past that, you’re buying bottle.

      If you can’t get good liquor for $30 / L., you’re an idiot, or you’re in Scandanavia.

      1. If you can’t get good liquor for $30 / L., you’re an idiot, or you’re in Scandanavia.

        Seems like one half of a Mark Twain quote.

    2. Funny thing is…you can just buy the bottle. Empty Crystal Head bottles are selling for $40 on eBay. Amazing.

  6. I see no problem with upthrust and evident breasts. In fact, I kinda prefer them.

    Anyhow, this story makes me wonder which government is worse: Britain or Canada.

    1. Link to said wine label?

      1. Not finding it. But I did find an article about a BATF “out of control” (No! Go on! Get out!), which offered the following explanation:

        In 1986, for instance, the bureau blocked the sale of Collio wine from Italy because the bottles had labels that included a drawing of a nude woman by the artist Erte. The BATF cited its authority to prohibit “obscene or indecent” representations. “The breasts on this label were upthrust and very evident,” a BATF spokeswoman told The Wall Street Journal. “If the picture had been a masterpiece, it would have been allowed, but it wasn’t, so it’s obscene.” Bowing to the bureau’s artistic judgment, the wine’s importers applied gold paint to 4,000 bottles, covering up the woman with a “low-cut, modern swimming costume,” which won BATF approval in May 1987. The next year’s batch of Collio bore a new label, featuring a flat-chested version of Erte’s nude woman.

        Some Googling has yet to yield an image of the original, unmodified label, but I did find several other, less titillating, lables.

        1. The Balthus label for 1993 Ch. Mouton Rothschild is the example I use for pointing out BATFE zaniness in labeling laws.

    2. 36D : The number of the Breast.

  7. If Canadians want their Gov. to take money out of their pockets and pay such people to be on such a Board, it is their loss.

  8. Ohio has some amusing liquor laws:

    (3) No advertisement shall represent, portray, or make any reference to children.

    (4) No advertisement shall represent, portray, or make any reference to Santa Claus.

    And from the section on Entertainment – prohibition against improper conduct:

    (2) “Nudity” means the showing of the human male or female genital, pubic area or buttocks with less than a fully opaque covering; the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering of any part of the nipple and/or areola; the exposure of any device, costume, or covering which gives the appearance of or simulates the genitals, pubic hair, natal cleft, perineum anal region or pubic hair region; or the exposure of any device worn as a cover over the nipples and/or areola of the female breast, which device simulates and gives the realistic appearance of the nipples and/or areola.

    1. So much for my “Nuthin’ But Merkins!” franchising plan…

    2. I guess you could show Jesus boozing up.

  9. The image of the human skull is the thing that’s really problematic for us. We will also be banning productions of Hamlet, unless they are willing to replace the skull with a bowling ball or something.

    1. I believe if you replaced the skull with a bowling ball you’d get Two Gentlemen of Lebowski.

  10. STEVE APPROVE SKULL BOTTLE. STEVE KEEP ALL HIS LICKER IN HIKER SKULLS. ALSO USE EMPTY SKULL WHEN STEVE TOO TIRED TO WALK TO BATHROOM.

    1. a eye out for you.

  11. I got to interview Ralph Steadman when Ohio banned the label he designed for Cardinal Zin wine. He even reprinted my column in one of his books. Good times.

  12. As long as the feds keep their damn hands off the upthrust breasts in the Reason tee-shirt ads, I’m happy.

  13. Canada bans DVDs of “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.”

    “The image of the alien skull is the thing that’s really problematic for us. That’s an image that’s commonly associated with wackos like Dan Aykroyd. It’s especially problematic at a time when there are concerns around poorly made sequels seen younger adults, which in some cases unfortunately has resulted in the poisoning of a classic franchise.”

    Here’s the blurb I would have liked too read. Too bad the real article was full of stupid.

  14. The bottle is a wide-mouth, thus facilitating skull-fucking.

    Extracting penises wedged in glass bottles costs the health care system six million a year…

    1. I think we have a winner…

  15. My daughter brought me a souvenir bottle of hootch from Iceland a few years ago. Seems that country has exactly the opposite take from Canada.

  16. Another one of the wierdnesses of Canada. The drinking age is 18, but you have to buy your liquor from a government controlled board.

    Living in Arizona, where hard liqor can be purchased in the supermarket, I now find these things anachronistically puritanical. Especially for a country that prides itself on not being puritanical.

    But then Canada is also the one which thinks it should control the content of the teleivision it’s population is allowed to watch, and has speech control boards prosecuting people for offending Muslims.

    1. The drinking age is 18

      Depends on the province; Nova Scotia for instance is 19.

      But at least they still believe in that whole federalism thing (which you can actually thank the otherwise socialistastic Quebecois for)

      1. at least they still believe in that whole federalism thing (which you can actually thank the otherwise socialistastic Quebecois for)

        Ya, Quebec is a bizarre combination of extreme state power (sign laws, etc.) and nationalism with a few tiny laissez-faire exceptions (mostly alcohol, tobacco and sex).

    2. Another one of the wierdnesses of Canada. The drinking age is 18, but you have to buy your liquor from a government controlled board.

      To clarify…

      In Ontario (drinking age 19), all liquor and wine is through the LCBO. Beer is available only from a government-enforced private monopoly run by the 3 big brewers.

      Other provinces have different laws. Quebec (drinking age 18) is like the wild wild west for brewers, and the freedom has resulted in a craft beer industry that kicks the crap out of all the other provinces (and most US states). Beer and wine are available at grocery stores, corner stores, gas stations, etc. Liquor is controlled and sold by the province stores (SAQ).

      (In Quebec it’s also ok to smoke in church and to take your wife to Club Supersexe for your anniversary).

  17. “In 1992 the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms tried to block distribution of Black Death vodka on the grounds that its labeling created the misimpression ‘that the product is inherently unsafe for human consumption at any level’ while simultaneously ‘mock[ing] the real health risks which may result from the consumption of alcohol by making an obviously false claim about the dangers of alcohol consumption,’ thereby undermining the surgeon general’s printed warnings.”

    So this suggests that, if someone were to market marijuana with a label saying “this stuff can kill you,” the government might try to cause trouble by flexing its truth-in-labeling muscles. Then we could derive entertainment (and perhaps eventual legal benefit) from watching the bizarre spectacle of government expending resources (tax dollars, alas) to PROVE that using pot WON’T kill you. Once this were established in a court of law, could we not cite the case in future efforts to strike down prohibition? I’d love to get government to carry OUR water for a change.

  18. Saw this in the PA liquor catalog magazine. Looked cool, would love to try it but it seemed kind of expensive, but worth it for the bottle.

  19. make the breasts in the drawing of a nude woman on a wine label less “upthrust” and “evident”

    Oh, so *that’s* why my liquor store has those bottles upside down.

  20. But public health paternalists argue that death-related imagery, which serves as a warning when used by the government, serves as an enticement when used by marketers, practically daring macho adolescents to consume the product.

    So they’re arguing that taboo, dangerous and prohibited items entice people to use them because there’s a social status boost from flaunting authority and danger?

    Why are drugs illegal again?

    1. When I do drugs the crystal skull talks to me, tells me to do things…

      It speaks in Fred Garvin’s voice…

  21. Fred Garvin, male prostitute?

    1. Man, Margot Kidder was cute back then
      http://www.hulu.com/watch/3514…..prostitute

  22. My high school guidance counselor sucked.

    I mean, only now do I find out that there’s a job where someone has to stare at all day at depictions of boobs and decide whether or not it’s indecent and inappropriate for public display.

    Man, I should have become a bureaucrat.

  23. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Vodka bottles.

  24. This post needs a soundtrack. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6j2YBD–1U
    Cut and paste or click on my name.

  25. I live in Ontario, I disagree with this decision, but the LCBO usually isn’t so stupid and it’s not too bad; principle should not lead to exaggerated demonization. The U.S. liquor industry has it’s own flaws. Speaking of vodka, coolers made with vodka which they are in Canada taste MUCH better than the malt liquor stuff you have in the U.S. I think I once tried a Smirnoff cooler or Mike’s Hard Lemonade made with malt liquor (presumably because of the tax incentives) – how can you drink that stuff?

    From comparative studies privatization would drive down prices on lower-priced wines and spirits (IF the rules regarding minimum pricing were removed at the same time), but outside major cities there’d be a much worse selection of premium wines and spirits. On mid-range and luxury wines and spirits, there are actually often bargains (relative to what it would cost elsewhere including the U.S.) to be had; I think the LCBO is still the largest single alcohol-purchasing entity in the world (since more populous areas are privatized), and it does exercse its purchasing power to get bargains, special offerings like vertical offerings of large-format wines direct from wineries, purchasing Bordeaux futures easy, etc. My point is, in principle privatization may be better, but for some things, on a personal level, I’d be worse off.

    Also, not that I want to buy a whole case, but you can order this vodka or buy something the LCBO doesn’t offer through them (or through a wine club which could allow for buying less than a full case).

    I agree with a prior poster, I like Tito’s vodka, or a potato vodka like Luksosowa, when I get a premium vodka. Going more expensive than that, or indeed for most premium vodkas, isn’t worth it to me as either I notice no difference or like it less.

    1. “I think I once tried a Smirnoff cooler or Mike’s Hard Lemonade made with malt liquor (presumably because of the tax incentives) – how can you drink that stuff?”

      Only American high-school/college girls and submissive male hairstylists named Max knowingly purchase that swill.

  26. Move to Missouri – Beer, Liquor, ammo, cigarettes, condoms, porno mags and movies: And that’s just in our quick marts…

  27. LOL..

    You all need to come to Korea….
    Booze 24/7 (as we hip kids say) from stores, and no open container laws…

  28. I have purchased both the 26oz bottle and the oh-so precious $140.00 40oz bottle of this product and I wish I could find an address to thank Dan Aykroyd for investing in this project and bringing it to store shelves. this Vodka requires breathing time and then mixed or straight it is VERY potent. Tastes too medicinal if not left to breathe in the glass before consuming. 3 1-oz shots and you evening is over.

  29. Alright, I know the U.S. has it’s share of problems. But I’m glad I live there over stupid, little, shit like this. The bottle itself to me is a work of art, and I for one, collect every one of them I empty. Great product, great bottle. I wish company would put this much work into their marketing.

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