I had a hard time receiving the oak barrel from Still-craft. It was delivered more than a month after it was ordered. They never initiated contact. They always had excuses in their replies, but offered no form of compensation. It was the epitome of how not to operate an online business.
After 2 weeks since ordering the barrel in mid-December, I hadn’t received word on whether it was processed, made, or shipped. I tend to have faith in most online companies, but after 2 weeks of radio silence, I had to e-mail them to check on the status. They said that it was being shipped out, and I should receive it in a week.
A week passes with no follow-up from them, so I contact them again. This time, they say that their system had hit some kind of snafu, and asked for my patience. So I reply, “Why did you tell me last week that I was going to be receiving it?” They blamed it again on the system, but that I should be receiving it soon.
Another week passes until they finally provide me with a tracking number, which originated in Mexico. Before ordering, they had specifically told me that the barrel is made in America, but the barrel stand is made in Mexico. Giving them the benefit of the doubt, I decided not to make a fuss over this. Only when I receive the barrel a week later (5 weeks) do I realize that I’ve been duped. Based on the “Hecho en Mexico” stickers plastered all over the barrel, I assume that everything was made over there.
“It was the epitome of how not to operate an online business.”
I request a refund, but they refuse due to the small endcap being engraved. They apologize for the inconvenience, and they consider their customer service to be of the utmost importance. Yet, despite all the delays, they never provide any expedited processing, expedited shipping, discount, extras, etc… They did however offer me a 10% coupon for my next purchase, of which there will never be one.
Onto the barrel!
Construction seems decent. I prepped it (soaking it in water to expand), and have now filled it with Bulleit bourbon. I’ll let that age for a year, with the ultimate goal being to age a cocktail in there after the bourbon is done. I’ll do a taste test at 6 months, and then again at 1 year.