Monday, April 29, 2019

They only fix it if you poke them with a stick

Eighteen months ago I wrote in "PLCB Stupid Inventory Part 100" how five out of only 53 items in the "Blended Whiskey" category of their product database the wrong category, about a 10% error rate. If you got 10% of your job wrong every day, would you still have that job? Would your boss who accepted that rate of failure have his job?

That's when I wrote that post; I started poking them with a stick.

So 18 months later...the PLCB error rate in Blended Whiskey is now over 13.8%. Way to go, guys. The PLCB has two ways to look up things. The so-called flat file inventory that I use here, which has everything in one place, or the slower, seemingly less accurate one on the FWAGS website, which is just as bad, in its own way. The flat file inventory also allows you to look up things by type, which is what I'm doing below.

Tell you what. I'm feeling generous today, so I'm going to list a few items that they can't seem to figure out and tell them why they're marked wrong. I'll even send them the list. But you know...I'm pretty sure the next time I check, they'll still be wrong, and there will be new things wrong too. But maybe they'll learn. Maybe.

All the federal regulations that pertain to whiskey classification can be found online in the Electronic Code OF Federal Regulations. That's how you know what kind of whiskey you have, and how it's going to be labeled. Maybe somebody in the PLCB has read it, but I have my doubts.

Most of these won't even require a reading of the regs. They're pretty simple. Let's have a look at what's wrong with these entries in the Blended Whiskey category.

Now this is bourbon!
1. 510608 Berkshire Mountain Distillers Bourbon Whiskey - This one is pretty easy. If it's a bourbon, it's not a blend: it's a bourbon.

2. 153 Brixton Bourbon Whiskey Mash Destroyer - I could almost forgive this one, because it's a 'blend' of bourbon and rum; where do you put that? 

But they couldn't even get the name right! It isn't Brixton Bourbon Mash Destroyer, it's Brixton Mash Destroyer. Why do they constantly add words that aren't there? Put this in SPECIALTIES, but it's not BLENDED WHISKEY.

3. 31328 Clyde May's Bourbon Mash Whiskey - There is no Clyde May's "Bourbon Mash Whiskey." The Clyde May brand has a Straight Bourbon -- which is a bourbon -- and a "Alabama-style Whiskey" -- which is bourbon with apple added, which makes it SPECIALTIES -US, or WHISKEY...

Which leads you to ask: why does this database have a LIGHT WHISKEY category that has no entries, but no WHISKEY (FLAVORED) 2019? 

4. 608012 Crater Lake Rye Reserve- Again, not blended. It's RYE. Pretty simple. Who's making mistakes this simple and stupid? Sorry/not sorry: there's no other way to describe that.

5. 559141 George Dickel Whiskey Single Barrel - Reading comprehension and product knowledge required; no wonder the PLCB got it wrong.  If it is single barrel, what are you blending it with? Imagination? There should be a TENNESSEE WHISKEY category. Most other Tennessees are in WHISKEY, which is such a catch-all it's all but worthless

6. 528555 Hooker's House Organic Rye Whiskey - There is no record of a "Hooker's House Organic Rye Whiskey" on the Internet...except connected to this mistaken PLCB record. Again, why are you adding words that aren't even there? In any case: RYE, not a blend. Okay?

7. 34278 Jack Daniel's Sinatra Select Tennessee Whiskey 90 Proof - Given their track record, is anyone really surprised that there's a Jack Daniel's bottling on this list? I've been mentioning this particular one for a few years now. JD doesn't make blended whiskey, but that doesn't stop the PLCB from getting it wrong for the past 3 years.

8. 504228 Jim Beam Eight Star Kentucky Whiskey 8 Year Old - They almost got this one right: it is a blend! But as I mentioned over a year is not 8 years old. Where is that on this very simple label? Nowhere that I can see.

9. 446 Wigle Phil's Shadow Rye Whiskey Finished in Maple Syrup Barrels - Not a blend. Again, at the very least, a RYE. 

I bet the answer is down here - I've looked nowhere else!
So there you have it, PLCB. The gauntlet is tossed. Clean 'em up. Oh, and don't fall back on the old excuse that you are told by your suppliers what these are. Just read the freakin' label, and copy it into the database without editorial additions. Easy-peasy. Get it done, or I'll have to get that stick out again. 

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