Restaurant Needed a Rescue. It Had One Bottle of Pappy

And someone paid much more than it is worth
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 8, 2020 11:50 AM CDT
To Help Restaurant, He Paid $40K for One Bottle of Booze
Recovered bottles of 20 year-old Pappy Van Winkle bourbon and Eagle Rare single barrel bourbon are shown during a news conference at the Franklin County Sheriff's Office in Frankfort, Ky., on April 21, 2015.   (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

Like many restaurants, the coronavirus brought financial hardship to Tampa Bay's Datz restaurant chain, which went from a staff of 400 to 27 as it transitioned to takeout and delivery only. But it got some relief this week when a couple paid $40,000 for a single bottle of bourbon, per WFLA. The owners, Suzanne Perry and husband Roger, had opted to sell off pricey liquor to avoid going under. The most valuable was a bottle of 25-year-aged Pappy Van Winkle Kentucky bourbon, one of just 710 produced, which Perry listed at the discounted price of $17,000. A couple eventually agreed to buy the bottle over the phone, while asking probing questions about the state of affairs at Datz. And when they showed up, they handed over a check for more than twice the asking price.

Perry's husband thought the check was a mistake and tried to return it. But the anonymous buyer, a local philanthropist and veteran, "said, 'No, I want you to have it, and I want you to use it for your staff,'" Perry tells the Tampa Bay Times. "I was so moved by that incredible generosity that I literally had to leave," she tells WFTS. The check meant Datz could bring back several staffers, who will now be put to work making meals for people on the front lines of the outbreak. "You've inspired many many others to give and be generous," Perry tells the buyer, per WFTS. "When we get on the other side of this, there's going to be something big in return to this person," she adds, per the Times. (More uplifting news stories.)

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