Quite a short blog post this one.

Very soon (early next week in fact) the annual melee that is the Diageo special releases will be upon us.

If there was such a thing as being psychic*, this would be the time of year that I pick up ‘vibes’ from our regular customers about what’s going on behind the scenes with the allocations we’re given, so I wanted to take this opportunity to lay out our policy with regard to stockholding and put everyone’s mind at rest.

I can do this in a couple of sentences:

Every single bottle of every single allocation that we’re given by every single supplier is sold directly to our customers. We don’t siphon any stock off for ‘directors’ personal collections**’, we don’t hold onto any stock in order to list it at a later date at a higher price, we don’t submit anything to auction sites***, and we don’t give preference to trade customers over retail customers.

We think that’s the fairest way.

What this policy leads to is an inevitable mad scramble when we set desirable products live on the site.

There are few things you can do to give yourself an edge on release day:


  1. Follow us on twitter. We’re @masterofmalt – and you’ll find that most *very* exciting stuff gets tweeted about either before or very soon after it goes live. There’ll also be some nonsense about Alan Partridge and pedantic correction of other peoples’ grammar, but that’s the price you pay.
  2. Keep a keen eye on the New Arrivals page. This is where the magic happens.
  3. Practice putting things in your basket and checking out.

Point 3 is especially important – the last ‘very exciting thing’ we had (10 bottles of Balcones V Straight Bourbon) sold out in less than a minute (including the time it took the quick-draw McGraw folk who got them to complete the checkout). Just because you’ve got one in your basket doesn’t mean you’ve secured it – you need to go all the way through the checkout and see the ‘Finished!’ screen in order to secure your purchases. Practice makes perfect.

See you on the other side.


*there isn’t.

** or ‘investment‘ to give that another name.

***not that there’s anything wrong with auctions – markets will be what they are – fill your boots. There is however something wrong if a retailer uses them to pocket a whole load of additional margin over the RRP from retail allocations.