Bringing alcohol into the US

Old Feb 15th, 2014, 08:22 PM
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Lucky you POIson. Enjoy those NZ drops!
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Old Feb 15th, 2014, 11:19 PM
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Good idea to start bringing those bottles back to the US now! Safer for the wine, too, that is, assuming your household goods will go back on a container ship. The temperatures could fluctuate, possibly destroying your wine. So it's just as well you can't put them into the storage container.

Before moving to NZ, I had to drink off quite a bit of our California wine cellar, and gave some bottles away. Still have about 100 bottles in storage there. I try not to think about it, fearing it might have turned to vinegar.

I've amassed a large collection of NZ Pinot Noir myself, but I still prefer your reds on the other side of the ditch! I agree Central Otago riesling is very fine, as is the pinot gris. But you've got some glorious riesling in SA as well!
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Old Feb 16th, 2014, 02:40 AM
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Yeah, we've gotten spoiled. We're going to miss all this fab wine (and food, and flat whites, and...) when we leave. We'll have to start over with CA wines, which we're pretty ignorant about. Oh well, it'll be fun experimenting.

I realize shipping by sea would probably ruin the wine, but I think our favorite fortified would survive and that's what we want the most.

If we ever get back to Dunedin Diamantina, we'll have to get together for a swap.
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Old Feb 16th, 2014, 07:22 AM
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Melnq8 - I think you'll have fun experimenting with the California wines, so much great wine. And, when you are ready to expand further look to Oregon (Wilamette valley) and Washington wines (Walla Walla, Horse Heaven Hills, Wahluke Slope, Woodinville), amazing stuff coming out of those regions too. Look for the smaller wine producers at wine fairs and wine tasting as well as the more well known brands available at wine stores and restaurants. Cheers!
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 05:53 PM
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Melnq8, I second POIson's suggestion to seek out Oregon's pinot noirs. In fact, I've brought a few back to NZ! I also agree that Washington state produces luscious reds (though I am not familiar with their pinot noirs). It's beautiful up there, as well.

Before moving to NZ, we lived in north Marin County near the Sonoma border. Sonoma's Pinot Noirs, especially those of Russian River Valley and Carneros (which is between Sonoma and Napa) are worth seeking out. Napa, Santa Barbara, and Mendocino County (Anderson Valley) also produce some amazing pinot noirs. The best way to learn about them is to tour the wine regions.

One great thing about living in the US is you can buy such a wide variety of international foods and wines. As you know, you can't always find everything, such as your favorite fortified (which I would love to know the name of), but you'll be able to buy many fine NZ and Aussie wines at prices that are often less than those in their home countries. On a few occasions, I've brought NZ wine back to the US, only to find that the same wine (same vintage and everything) is cheaper at Costco or in a San Francisco wine shop.

I don't know what your choices will be like in CO, but the SF-based Jug Shop specializes in Aussie and NZ imports, and they can probably ship to CO.
http://thejugshop.com/store/
This US-based store also specializes in wines from the Southern Hemisphere:
https://www.southernwines.com/
I've ordered from both of them.
For ordering wines in general, I like K&L and Wine Club.
http://www.klwines.com/
http://www.thewineclub.com/
K&L will ship to CO, not sure about Wine Club.

So if you get "homesick" for a certain drop from the Antipodes, these wine sites might have what you're craving.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 06:03 PM
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If you return to Dunedin, I'll have to fill you in on my favorite places to visit. When the sun comes out in Dunedin and Coastal Otago, it's a great place to be. We love it here, though this coastal deepwater drilling has us worried about the coastline and its wildlife. It's too beautiful to lose.

On a more positive note, you'll be happy to read this news:
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/ar...ectid=11200857

I hope you won't be relocating too soon, though I'm sure you must miss family, friends, and your favorite CO places often.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 06:46 PM
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Fantastic, thanks for that Diamantina and POIson; I'll look for wine from your suggested regions while we're in the states.

Last year we'd planned to visit Sonoma on the way to CO, but we ran into some logistical problems during the planning stages, so bailed on the whole idea.

My experience with CO bottle shops is that they only carry AUS and NZ wine from the big producers and it's often re-labeled for export under a different name. Regardless, we tend to drink AUS and NZ wine when we're home on visits, but we really need to expand our wine drinking horizons.

Great idea to have it shipped from a CA retailer, as I have no doubt that you guys have much more variety than my hometown.

Most of the wineries we visit here and in NZ don't even sell in local bottle shops, let alone export...and unfortunately for us, they tend to make the wines we like.

Always happy to share my favorite fortified - I've taken everyone I know to their winery in the nearby Swan Valley and have gotten several folks hooked. We adore their Liqueur Verdelho, but every single one of their fortified wines is good.

http://www.taliwine.com.au/home.php

I hope we won't be relocating too soon either. We've been gone for 14 years, so it's going to be strange going back.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 06:48 PM
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And the NZ approval of marine reserves is indeed good news!

One small step.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 07:47 PM
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Yes, many of us US West Coasters are fond of wine, so the stores have a great selection.

Returning to the US after such a long time WILL be strange. I can't even imagine being gone that long. Each time I return to the Bay Area, I'm shocked by all the changes and I've only been away a few years.

If you ever make it to Sonoma Wine Country, also include a visit to the Sonoma Coast. I think you'd also enjoy Mendocino's Anderson Valley, and the Mendocino and Humboldt Coast (the Redwood Coast). Though you'd have to be prepared for the fog (which makes for great pinot).

Taliajancich's fortified look interesting and it looks like they are only sold through the winery or their wine club. I'm not a huge fan of fortifieds, but my husband loves port and late harvest wines, so he'd probably enjoy their wines. If we ever return to WA, we won't miss it--thanks for the thumbs up. Strangely, though we've twice visited wineries in Margaret River and Mt. Barker region, we never got around to Swan Valley, always meant to. There's just too much to see!

It may surprise you to learn, that prior to the creation of these new marine reserves, less than 1 percent of NZ's waters were protected as marine reserves.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 07:24 AM
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Most of the questions have been answered, but here is my experience:

- I always declare and have never been asked to pay duty for either hard alcohol or wine. They did take me aside at LAX once, but the agent got bored trying to calculate the amount and gave up.

- For wine, I get the shipper boxes and check them as luggage. A case of wine (12 bottles), will usually come in around 45 pounds, so just under the standard allowance. We have some carriers that are nice since they have wheels, but you still put the boxes inside them, we have checked just the boxes many times without issue. Both the ones with styrofoam and the ones with the fitted cardboard dividers work, though the styrofoam ones are probably a bit more rugged.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 03:20 PM
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Thank you travelgourmet.
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Old Dec 2nd, 2016, 11:08 PM
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Does anyone know if there's a way around the 1 liter limit by car from Mexico into California?
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Old Dec 3rd, 2016, 06:58 AM
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The 1 liter "limitation" is that's the amount a person can bring into the country "duty free". You can bring in more but you may have to pay duty on the "overage".

Basically, you can bring in a "reasonable amount" for you own consumption without having an import license but you'll pay customs duty. Sometimes if it's just a case the customs agent may waive the duty.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2016, 11:59 AM
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RoamsAround, you're sure that's the case when it's by car?
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Old Dec 3rd, 2016, 01:02 PM
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This site says it is 1 liter:

https://www.abc.ca.gov/permits/importing.html
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Old Dec 3rd, 2016, 08:18 PM
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This post has only served to make me crave Bundaberg Rum!
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Old Mar 8th, 2018, 02:07 PM
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What is the Customs Declaration Form and where can I get that?

Hello everyone. I've read that one "must declare" the amount of alcohol you intend to bring in to the US from Mex., and that there is a form for this. Does anyone have a direct link to this form? I have not had any luck finding it.

Any help is appreciated!
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Old Mar 8th, 2018, 02:22 PM
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They hand out the forms on the plane.
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Old Mar 8th, 2018, 02:23 PM
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I should have been more specific. I will be driving across the border. Thanks!
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Old Mar 8th, 2018, 02:37 PM
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https://www.cbp.gov/document/forms/f...glish-fillable
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