By Tom Vaught
STAFF PHOTO/TOM VAUGHT
Hess and Dipika Patel at the new Beachway Liquors
in west Bradenton.
sun staff writer
It is a well-known fact that buying large lots from wholesalers
means lower prices. It worked for Keith Patel at his Sarasota
store, Cattlemen Liquors, and it is working at his second
store just a short drive off the Island.
"This is a smaller store," he said, pointing to
the well-stocked, clean display shelves. The store offers
a wide variety and bright signs point out the low prices of
the constantly-changing specials on sale.
"Our other store is twice as big at 4,000 square feet,"
The liquor is arranged according to type, and the front counter
features accessories such as bottle openers, snacks and tobacco
products, including a large stock of imported cigars in a
humidor display case. It looks like a large corporate-owned
outlet, but it is not, a fact that has advantages when somebody
wants to place a large order for a wedding or a party.
"We give discounts for large orders," he said. "That's
something the chains can't do because the management doesn't
have the authority."
Patel said they decided to expand into Bradenton because of
the large stock it took to keep prices down at the other store.
He said west Bradenton was a natural location.
"We researched the area and we wanted to find the spot
where prices were outrageous," he said. "There were
no discount liquor stores here and we decided to put a store
here, but we could not find a location. When they remodeled
this shopping center (Beachway Plaza) to accommodate the new
Publix, this spot became available, and I negotiated a lease
as soon as I found out."
Patel said another reason for choosing the area was the fact
that the survey indicated people there drink a lot of wine.
"When we first opened, the snowbirds came and bought
cases and cases," he said. "They were glad to find
out our prices were so much less, and they took advantage
Patel said their volume buying allows them to charge an average
of $4 to $5 per bottle less for premium brands.
Island residents have taken advantage of their variety.
"We find that Island people come here for out high-end
wines," he said. "They like the fact that we offer
so many kinds."
In addition to choice and pricing, Patel said Beachway Liquors
offers full service.
"For those people who have trouble taking their purchase
to their cars, we have people on staff who will do it for
them," he said. "We have two people at the counter
at all times so somebody is always available to assist."
Their stock includes all brands of imported and domestic beer
and wine and, they can take special orders for those who know
what they want, but don't see it there."
For those Island residents looking for variety at discount
prices, the drive to the mainland might include a shopping
trip to the grocery stores in the area or the shops in the
refurbished Beachway Plaza. One thing for certain, it should
include a stop at Beachway Liquors.
Hess and Dipika Patel are the managers of the new store.
Name: Beachway Liquors
Address: 7318 Manatee Ave. W., Beachway Plaza, west Bradenton
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m; Sunday, 10
a.m. to 7 p.m.