Last week, on Saint Patrick’s Day, Little Bitty Bits (the wife) got me a gift: a nice bottle of Jameson 12.  Longtime readers of this blog (i.e., those who have read it for a month) might remember that I am a big fan of Jameson 12.  It was the bottle that convinced me that, after years of beer drinking, I can learn to love whiskey.  I had just kicked my bottle of Redbreast 12, so I eagerly put the gift bottle out for future enjoyment.

Now LBB, like me, is a proponant of a certain school of gift-giving which believes in gifts that give joy not just to the recipient, but to the giver as well.  In other words, she wanted some of the booze that she just bought.  So she opened the bottle that day.

Fast forward to yesterday.  It’s Friday night and I feel alright, and the party’s about to be here on the west side.  So I reach to pull the cork on the Jameson 12 and — hold on a second, there’s no cork.  It is a screw top.  I could swear that the last bottle was corked.  Hmmm … my mind starts turning … nah, couldn’t be … I’m just being paranoid … I hold the bottle up and study the label a bit.  I’m no expert on Jameson labels, but I’m not seeing anything indicating that this is the 12 year.  It seems to read as just the regular Jameson.  I go straight to the Google machine, and my suspicions are confirmed – the bottle in my hands is not Jameson 12, but the standard Jameson!

What is wrong with this picture?

Now, normally I would have marched straight back to the liquor store (insomuch as you can march in a car), shown them the discrepency and demanded satisfaction.  However, this is a bit complicated because LBB had opened the bottle and had two drinks from it.  What is to stop any customer from coming into their store with an open bottle of Jameson claiming to have purchased the wrong thing?

What do you say, whiskey world?  Has anything like this happened to you?  This is from a store that I’ve often frequented, and knowing the workers there a bit, I’d be surprised if this was something done by the store.  That said, LBB and I did stop by there last night and I took a peek into the only other Jameson 12 package there, and it did indeed contain the proper whiskey.

The basic takeaway is that this is a loss of about $20.  We paid $44 for a $24 bottle.  What would/could you do about it?


9 comments on “Hoodwinked!

  1. littletipple says:

    I would let the store know – you don’t need to be going in for a fight, a complaint or a refund, but they need to know, since it may have been a) an innocent error, or b) another customer trying to pull a fast one. The worst that can happen is they apologise, the best is a new bottle – what’s to lose?

    • Of course you are right. I am just a natural conflict-avoider, and if anything want to make sure they don’t think I’m trying to pull one over on them. But it is true that they’d probably like to know.

      However, I’m not sure even how it is a customer pulling one over on them, as the regular Jameson does not come in additional packaging, so it isn’t like they put the 12 into that. Perhaps they took the Jameson 12 and put it in the carton of something cheaper like Johnnie Walker Black? But even there, that is only a couple of dollars cheaper, and wouldn’t you try to swipe a more expensive bottle? Like the Jameson Gold Reserve?

      I don’t know. It just doesn’t makes sense.

  2. Josh Feldman says:

    I had this happen to me recently. I purchased Glenmorangie Astar and there was a bottle of Glenmorangie Lasanta (about $25 less) inside the tube. The liquor store (Park Avenue Liquors – logically located on Madison Ave & 41st St) apologized and took it back. The swore it was a distillery error – that the stock had just arrived the day before. The tubes of that were kept behind the counter. I believed them. I hadn’t opened it, so the issue is easier but I would have gone back even if I had opened it. Given that, in your case 1/4 the bottle is gone your arguing position is somewhat weakened, I might be prepared to be more graceous… BTW, as a whisky loving man married to a bone dry and rather disapproving woman – you should count your blessings that you have a wife capable of knocking off almost 1/4 bottle in a sitting. I find such predilection charming.

    These days I check every tube – particularly the fancy stuff… I just got a scarce tube of Octomore 01.1. I must have opened it and looked lovingly (and a little fearfully) and that bottle half a dozen times…

    • Yes I’m certainly going to be checking all tubes/boxes from here on out. And if the cube contained a bottle of Octomore, my look would be 10% excitement, 10% curiosity, and 80% primal fear.

    • Bits says:

      Just for the record, that 1/4 wasn’t gone in one sitting. I took it to work in a flask. It was gone in one 8 HOUR sitting, and trust me, I needed more.

  3. Chuck says:

    I would also let them know what happened. But on a second note. If you enjoy J12, as I do, you might want to try the Gold Reserve. The J18 for me wasn’t as good as the J12, it just seemed a little bit too much. However, I bought a bottle of the Gold Reserve for St. Patty’s and absolutely loved it. They do three finishes, one in virgin oak casks, one in Bourbon barrels and another in Sherry Casks, they do a beautiful blend and let me tell you, this is probably my second favorite Irish whiskey, a bit above or tied with Redbreast, which is a legend in my collection. Anyway, as a fellow fan of the Irish, I would take a look in that direction. Anyway, Happy #WorldWhiskeyDay!




  4. EricH says:

    The local store I visit actually removes the bottles from the cartons for shelf display (the cartons are placed on higher shelves around the store). While you might not get the carton, you can see and make sure you are getting the right bottle.

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