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Jan 26, 2012 05:22 PM

Liqour Stores carrying great selection of cachacas that will ship to CA

I see that there are much better cachaca options in the Boston area due to the strong Brazilian presence. Was wondering if any of these liquor stores would be able to ship to California? The few decent brands we've had here in California are fading away due to lack of interest , but I must press on and keep myself stocked. Let me know who can make it happen for me. TIA.

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  1. Not gonna happen. It's against commonwealth law to ship outside of Massachusetts. Sorry.

    7 Replies
      1. re: streetgourmetla

        streetgourmetla New Jersey which also has some importers is likewise unfriendly as far as alcohol shipments. The only Northeast state with a sizable Brazilian population which might be more friendly regarding shipping is Connecticut, so you need to make some Brazilian friends in Danbury (the owner of the Serra Dourada seemed to collect such things, but that restaurant has closed)! Two liquor stores that advertise to brasileiros there are Conte's Package Store in Bridgeport and Railroad Spirit Shoppe in Danbury. If there is contact info on your blog (nothing on your profile), I'll try to drop you a note if flight connections send me through LAX.

          1. re: itaunas

            Sadly, Connecticut also has restrictive shipping laws (though not as bad as Massachusetts, which competes with South Carolina and Utah for dumbest liquor laws in the country).

            The only states with open (i.e., reciprocal) shipping laws are California, Colorado, Hawai`i, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin, none of which have significant populations of Brazilians or Brazilian-Americans.

            1. re: Das Ubergeek

              Well, if anyone would like to make a few bucks buying cachaca and sending it to me here in Cali, I'd love to make it worth your effort. My current methods are trips to Brasil, having friends bring bottles from their trips, and I'm making arrangements with a company from Brasil to send bottles. I'm exploring all schemes--I must have more CACHACA cara!

              1. re: streetgourmetla

                I may be going to NJ in a few weeks. I'll let you know if I do.

                1. re: Das Ubergeek

                  Dave, I know how to return a favor. Thanks.

      2. I interviewed the guys that make this a couple years ago, perhaps you can contact them.

        7 Replies
        1. re: TrishUntrapped

          Trish streetgourmetla is looking largely for cachacas from Minas Gerais, such as the portfolio of this MA importer (which carries largely medium sized value brands). We have some which are hard to get elsewhere in the country and are a relative bargain.

          The distributor which handles beija, belaza pura or leblon in MA (can't remember which one), does carry a nice artisan cachaca 'GRM' from the triangulo mineiro which used to only be exported to Europe (they import some other longer aged cachacas but not certain they come to MA, but we have similar brands). The Nova Schin importer/distributor also handles a few cachacas I believe (a couple of importers specializing in Portuguese wines dropped their lines with some consolidation so a couple of these companies have picked up).

          To try and get this Boston oriented again some good retail places to start are Jerry's Liquors in Somerville (they also carry jabuticaba liquor and some portugese aguardente/aguardente bagaceira aka grappa), SavMor (they have a few other aged cachaca), and Alexander (Barrios) Liquors in Somerville. Allston Food and Spirits (corner of N Harvard and Cambridge) carried several smaller labels from Minas Gerais before others, but don't know today. Presidential Liquors in Quincy also used to have a buyer who specialized in cachaca, but I believe he moved on.

          1. re: itaunas

            Thanks Itaunas. The GRM is nice. Looks like all that's left in California is Weber Haus. Leblon just destroyed the competition--all the bars use it exclusively except for the handful of Brazilian restaurants that use Ypioca and Velho Barreiro.

          2. re: TrishUntrapped

            Thanks, TrishUntapped. As Itaunas said, I'm looking for cachaca. I don't want to bash the straight to US market brands backed by non-Brazilian investors--certainly they've promoted cachaca in the US-- but I only enjoy drinking artisanal cachacas. Yes, from Minas(Particularly from Salinas), but I also have fine cachacas from Sao Paulo, Rio, and Salvador da Bahia.

            The triple distilled, Grey Goose style bottled cachacas are geared towards the premium cocktail market: Leblon, Beleza Pura, Cabana, and Sagatiba. They are mostly triple distilled, which keeps them tight and clean, but nuetral in flavor. Bartenders love that, because it's flexible like vodka.

            But, oh, the complexities of a genuine double distilled cachaca aged in balsa, Ipe, or jequitiba are about the best thing you can ever throw back. I'm a tequila/mezcal/scotch/rum drinker/collector, but I think cachaca has my heart and soul. I have a small group of cachaceiros that get it, and I don't see cachaca breaking through like tequila did anytime soon, so in the meantime I shall get bottles anyway I can. I appreciate all your help.

            1. re: streetgourmetla

              No problemo, I understand. I only mentioned Beija because the company is actually based in Boston, and it is considered an artisanal cachaca from the state of Sao Paulo and Minas Gerais. The guys who run the company are really nice too. Cheers.

              Here's an article about Beija:

              1. re: streetgourmetla

                I mentioned Minas primarily because what we have slightly different in Boston is "pinga" and that is probably the term I should have used as it distinguishes it from the "cachaça brazilian rum" which are imported via France to take advantage of tariff loopholes. Its not all bad as evidenced by getting GRM stateside. streetgourmetla you should add something from Espirito Santo to that list -- I have been trying to get my hands on G&G which I have only found on Mercadolivre (and there isn't much else to go to Rio Bananal) and Tres Quedas which are more interesting than the more available Santa Terezinha and Pedra Azul. I now know who would have been interested in some bottles of aguardente de jabuticaba I found in Minas a few weeks ago.

                TrishUntapped the folks from Beija have never said whether the cachacas which are used in their "blend" are made in an "alambique" (a pot still instead of a column still) -- you can certainly make good spirits in a column still but it most cases its not about that. Nor do they talk about aging or types of woods -- in Brazil there is a huge variety of woods used from oak, balsam fir, chestnut, jatoba, umburana, jequitiba, even cherry (I am sort of repeating streetgourmetla here but it is something largely unique to Brazil). Type of barrel aging barril (horizontal tonel) vs dornas (vertical), etc, larger tanks used for a more neutral spirit. This is why some of us take umbrage at the thought of paying twice as much to companies which put a label of premium and artesanal but is it really?

                1. re: itaunas

                  I'm interested in true cachacas from any state in Brasil. Yes, again, it's not all bad, but for now, they've elimated any small producers here on the West Coast. Cachaca needs to have their Patron(in terms of marketing, not flavor) and Don Julio(old formula before Seagrams and Diageo) come into the market, and then their artisanal products will have a chance. Cachaca is skipping tghe Cuervo era(Ypioca) and going straight to the Grey Goose model of frosty bottling.

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