Duane Reade Opens With Beer Bar in Brooklyn

Just don't mix your medicine with your alcohol

By Jennifer Millman
|  Friday, Jan 14, 2011  |  Updated 9:50 AM EDT
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NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 17: A man walks outside of a Duane Reade drugstore February 17, 2010 in New York City. Walgreen Corporation announced that it will buy the New York City-based drugstore chain for $1.1 billion in cash. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

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Have to wait 15 minutes for your prescription? Have a beer.

The pharmacy chain knew it would have trouble luring customers loyal to local outlets when Duane Reade opened a new store in Brooklyn a few months ago. So some creative guru -- or a group of them -- figured they'd sweeten the deal by offering alcohol.

Now, on Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg, you can get your medication, household needs and a drink in one stop shopping. One corner of the store features a beer bar with nine beers on tap, incuding Fire Island Lighthouse Ale, according to The New York Times.

"We knew we would have a little bit of a battle to try to bring Duane Reade into this community, because they really don’t like a chain store," Paul Tiberio, Duane Reade senior vice president for merchandising and marketing, told the Times.

To the dismay of those who'd prefer to relax with a pint, the bar only offers tastings and growlers, which are refillable glass bottles that line the walls behind the bar.

But the concept speaks to Duane Reade's effort to hyperlocalize its stores to accommodate the needs and wishes of its patrons without posing a threat to the more traditional mom-and-pop pharmacies.

"With each of our newer stores, we’re trying to find what works in our community," Tiberio told the Times. And in Williamsburg,"this was an area that was devoid of opportunities for beer,” he said.

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