Flocking to liquor stores amid COVID-19

“I need an essential bottle of pinot noir"
Posted at 5:31 PM, Mar 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-25 23:41:47-04

KENMORE, NY (WKBW) — Liquor stores and wine shops are reporting record sales across New York State.

The industry has been deemed an "essential business" by Governor Cuomo and allowed to remain open during the Coronavirus outbreak.

There was a steady stream of customers buying their favorite beverages at Straight Up Wines & Liquors on Elwmood in Kenmore.

“I need an essential bottle of pinot noir,” said Marlene Sullivan, shopper.

Sullivan, of Grand Island, lives with her elderly father who she cares for and wanted to stock up on some white wine.

Shopper Marlene Sullivan looks for wine.

“Well, I’m a caregiver and wines coming in handy, right now, but no it's just nice to know we can pretty much get our groceries and refreshments,” replied Sullivan.

“Some come in and they come back to what they're wanting - they come back to what their wines are, some buy their liquor - vodkas - what we're not seeing are people like buying part - I don't think there's a lot of people getting together,” explained Dan Locche, owner, Straight Up.

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Straight Up Wines & Liquors on Elwmood in Kenmore.

Locche says he had a huge surge of business a couple of weeks ago when the state starting shutting other businesses down.

This was the biggest round of business for him since opening eight years ago.

“It’s the largest purchase I’ve made outside of when we opened the store. We've had to restock that much they were delayed delivering our stock two days,” Locche said.

Inside Straight Up Wines & Liquors on Elwmood in Kenmore.

For those who do venture out, the store owner has taken precautions.

Locche says it's probably the cleanest his store has ever been.

Cashiers are using hand sanitizer and wearing gloves.

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Cashier wears gloves at the store.

“Unfortunately we have not been able to get face masks, so hat's been kind of a problem. We do keep our distance people have been actually very, very good they keep some five to six feet when they do get in line, so that's the big thing the distancing and as well as keeping clean,” Locche remarked.

The store also cut back on its hours, operating from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 12 noon 6 p.m. Sunday.

If you don't feel comfortable coming inside you can contact them for curbside delivery at the store between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. for delivery.