I got a reply from my inquiry to Total Wine this morning. I'm not surprised, but I didn't receive the answer I was hoping for, so I'm right back where I started. It's not Total Wine's fault that they can't help me out, though. Apparently, there is a 3-tiered system of alcohol making, distribution and sales, an archaic way of trying to keep the mob out of running the alcohol business. One thing about the reply was the it was very informative and interesting, and I appreciate the timely response as well. But back to the drawing board for new products.
My favorite part of the response was when I was reminded about the story line of Smokey and the Bandit, "going west from Georgia with an 18 wheeler to get some Coors beer and then trucking it back (illegally across state lines) to Georgia, where it wasn't available legally at the time". That and the conclusion. "Your logic is, indeed, "logical", however with the laws that are in place regarding alcoholic beverages, it would be illegal for Total Wine to do what you said."
Now I don't want Total Wine to do anything illegal for sure. I can't have my girlfriend in jail or on the lam. But doesn't this just highlight some of the most ridiculous laws around? It wouldn't be the first time (or hundredth time) the government does something ass-backwards. This system is totally bad for business and keeps several unnecessary middlemen in a super-inefficient process. Just because it's alcohol? Dude, we need some reform here. And President Obama is just the man to reform this system. He should get some practice on something like this before he screws up the healthcare system.
I'm now drinking Wailua Wheat Ale (available at Total Wine in Pembroke Pines), which is a limited release beer brewed by Kona Brewing Company in Portsmouth, New Hampshire for Kona Brewing Company in Kona, Hawaii. There is a nice tropical picture on the label and a story explaining that Wailua, the Hawaiian word for two fresh water streams mingling, is the inspiration for the making of this beer.
Wailua has a fruity and sweet, yet slightly malty aroma. The flavors have a lot of fruits in the beginning--passion fruit, lemon, orange. Yet the beer has some tartness and bitterness to balance that out. A light bread and wheat flavoring show up as well. Medium carbonation and medium body, yet after the opening flavors, the beer is a bit watery. It was a refreshing beer and kind of a unique fruity one at that.
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