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Dec 20, 2007 07:03 AM

Discount liquor store within 45 min of DC?


I am hosting a New Year's Eve party for 125 and need to buy liquor. I know some good liquor stores in DC, but none of the ones that I know are particularly inexpensive.

Does anyone know of a place with good prices? Virginia is out because they only sell liquor through their ABC stores, I think.


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  1. Corridor Wine and Spirits in Laurel is right up 295. I'm not sure how discount they are, but they certainly handle large volumes.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Jason1

      Will second Corridor. Here is link to online catalog with prices

      1. re: Jason1

        Corridor is where we get most of ours from. They have decent prices on large volumes. It depends on from where you are coming. They sell beer, wine and liquor, not just beer and wine or wine and liquor.

      2. Don't shoot the messenger but actually Montgomery County Liquors is having a sale until the first and are beating Corridor prices on hard liquor pretty handily. Their wine is still well above Corridor, but you can goggle Montgomery County Liquor and get a price list there. You will save some bucks for sure.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Maryland Crab

          I'd find it hard to believe that prices would be much if at all cheaper than Calvert Woodley. I love shopping there and they always have sales and good prices. Probably comprable to anywhere else. Maybe 1.75 liters of something will be a dollar cheaper if you drive 45 minutes away?

          1. re: JoshInDC

            I like Calvert Woodley, too, but I'm looking for 6 cases of wine, 3 cases of bubbly, a case of vodka and a case of gin. This will likely be between $1500-2000, so just a 10% savings could be $200.

            I'll drive 45 min for $200, especially since I'm off next week.

            Thanks for the suggestions, everyone.

            1. re: Prince_Buster

              Depending on how far you're willing to drive (or maybe you're headed this way for holiday travels or know someone who is), both Costco and BJ's Wholesale off of 95 in Delaware have dirt-cheap liquor stores attached to their warehouse clubs. No sales tax, either.

        2. Is Schneider's in DC really that expensive? I always thought it was pretty good for prices. And the service is great. Of course, I live in VA, so anything other than the ABC stores is a welcome change. :)

          3 Replies
          1. re: chinkleDC

            Interesting responses. Interesting that the original question was rephrased from liquor to "six cases of wine." First, with a purchase this large most ANY store will negotiate with you. You do not have to be looking for a sale. Second, depending on where you live the best price you are going to find without negotiating is from the Wine Library in Springfield, NJ for wine which is 25% off across the board and 30 or more on many bottles. This goes out the window if you are buying wine that is $5-9 a bottle because the shipping is about $2 per bottle. Again, depends on what you are buying.

            For myself I would drive to Calvert Woodley/Paul's/MacArthur/Schneider's/Circle (all of these will negotiate a large order) and ask to speak to the manager . But, first, know WHAT you want. Which wine? What brand of vodka, gin, etc. My guess is that you'll end up getting 25% off across the board on everything. I would NOT split the order and buy the wine from one place and the liquor from another. I would buy everything from one store. This will give you more leverage.

            You can also try this with the place in Laurel that several others are recommending. I do not know it but again, you can negotiate the price you are going to pay buying this much alcohol. It happens all the time.

            1. re: Joe H

              thanks for the helpful info, joe h!

              1. re: alkapal

                Sometimes, it is advantageous to put together a group of friends/neighbors/etc. and buy in volume for a large discount. I've done this with neighbors where we live or, REALLY liking a particular wine, committed to buying three or more cases from a particular vendor. Some places, like the Wine Library and several others in NJ and elsewhere (i.e. Wine Club in CA), are very straightforward: 25% off on everything they carry. Sometimes more. Other places, like Arrowine in Arlington will negotiate if you are willing to buy in volume or, even, if you are willing to buy a case of a particular expensive wine. Example: I trade Caymus Special Selection which is a $160 cabernet for a particular amarone in Italy that retails for much more than that here. The Italian winery cannot buy the Special Select there for the price I can here and vice versa. Therefore I try to get the best price I can on what I am buying for them. I've found that both Schneider's and Arrowine will sell this for $119 if I am willing to buy a six pack case (which it comes in). I've found that MANY other stores will give me a 20-25% discount if I am willing to buy, say, five or more cases of a wine or several wines at a time. I haven't tried this at Total or Wegman's but I have done this with, honestly, a dozen or more retailers in the D. C. area. I am convinced that anyone willing to buy in volume can negotiate a price with almost any retailer. Consider that for the retailer they probably will not carry the particular wine/wines that you want. They are going to get them from a distributor. When they place the order which you have already paid for, everything they make on it is profit. They wouldn't stock the wine if you hadn't asked for it. By paying and then placing the order they have no exposure. Whatever the difference is between their cost and the selling price is their profit (after overhead). The result is that a markup that typically may be 50% can easily be negotiated down to 20 or 25%.

                It pays to drink a lot...or buy for a group of people who drink a lot!

          2. I don't know what the laws are now, but at one time there was a limit (1 proof gallon, I think) to how much you could legally carry across a local border. It was a long time ago, but occasionally the cops would watch for cars with Virginia license plates loading cartons into the trunk of their cars at the Georgetown liquor stores and bust them when they drove across Key bridge.

            I know that you can now mail order wine from out of state to Virginia, but I'm sure there's a limit for personal use (which includes a big party).

            1 Reply
            1. re: MikeR

              I will place an order with, say, the Wine Library in Springfield, NJ (central NJ) on Monday before noon and it will be delivered to my doorstep the next day. Same is true if I order it on Tuesday, Weds. or Thursday-all are literally next day delivery. I've been doing this for three or four years and have not found an exception. I live in Reston. There was also a time many years ago when Central on 9th street was D. C.'s largest store. When I lived in Silver Spring in the '60's and '70's I remember stories of Montgomery County cops staking out the area around Georgia and Eastern and pulling over cars that they literally "tailed" from downtown and Central. At the time the Montgomery County dispenseries didn't approach Central's prices or selection. (Frankly, for many people the selection is as important or more so than the price.) I vaguely remember walking into the Dispensery on Cameron street (next to "Eddie Leonard's") and thinking that they had a fraction of the wine that Central, or even Morris Miller on Alaska Avenue did. I'm not so sure that anything has changed today.

            2. Very helpful information. Thanks everyone.

              And I should have been more clear about what I was looking for. While I need liquor, too, the bulk of this order will be the wine.

              Enjoy the holidays!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Prince_Buster

                I am a fan of Corridor as well. Another place in Baltimore that we have had great success with (especially dealing in quantity) is Wells Liquors on York Road ( They have a great wine selection, helpful staff and give a good deal on multiple cases if you ask.