419 – Making Bourbon Big at Retail with Brad Williams of GoPuff

If you’ve been to Kentucky, then you’ve probably stopped at one of the many Liquor Barn locations. It’s been a cornerstone for bourbon buyers such as myself for many years. But now Liquor Barn has been acquired by GoPuff and we get a chance to sit down with Brad Williams, the Sr Category Manager for American Whiskey of GoPuff Brands, to talk about what it’s like to manage American Whiskey brands and barrel picks across geographies for the brand family of Liquor Barn, BevMo, and 400 other regional locations. Needless to say, it’s a lot of whiskey math and choosing barrels to go in the right markets. Brad gives us insight into keeping customers excited, what happens when a barrel pick flops, and where he sees buying trends happening.

Show Notes:

  • Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about preference of small batch over single barrles
  • Why is your title so long and what does it encompass?
  • How did GoPuff start?
  • How did competition in the market make you change strategies?
  • Since GoPuff is across many states, does allocation go across states?
  • How are you able to devote your time to the mass amount of single barrels selected?
  • With your leverage can you make distilleries do special things that no one else can do?
  • What happens when a barrel pick flops?
  • How do you keep customers excited about more barrel picks?
  • Do you try to have the largest bourbon selection across the state?
  • What bourbon buying trends are you seeing?
  • How do you deal with the haters that don’t like your barrel picks?
  • What’s your criteria on judging whiskey for different markets?
  • Support this podcast on Patreon

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