How can I get a bottle of German liqueuer in America?
December 3, 2004 8:40 AM   Subscribe

There's a wonderful liqueur that I'd like to buy as a gift, but it's only available from a distillery in Germany. I contacted the distillery, and with my somewhat limited German, was able to ask about shipment to the US. They can ship it, but don't accept payment via credit card, but rather "mit Rechnung." This I believe to be "by check," but I'm not sure. Has anyone had experience with this kind of transaction? Some German sites I saw which also require that kind of payment have forms that ask for a password. Is this an EU thing only?
posted by icetaco to Food & Drink (17 answers total)
Systran translation: 'Calculation'.

That's not that helpful tho, is it?
posted by dash_slot- at 8:53 AM on December 3, 2004

think "reckoning", e.g. invoice on a cash (wire, check, etc.) basis.
posted by dorian at 8:59 AM on December 3, 2004

Response by poster: Yes, but how do I proceed with payment? Go to a bank and ask for a wire transfer? Maybe I'll contact the vendor and ask if that will Leitungsübertragung? (Google translation.)
posted by icetaco at 9:12 AM on December 3, 2004

"On account", even (I'm not fluent in german either, just going by a dictionary list of translations). If it's like North America, they'll require you to fill out a credit application (in German, no doubt) and then send you an invoice with the item, giving you 30-90 days to pay the bill.
My guess is that the distillery is only interested in wholesale transactions involving cases of product rather than bottles, and that you should look for an online middleman to get the booze shipped to you, but I could be wrong.
posted by cardboard at 9:13 AM on December 3, 2004

Response by poster: You could be right, actually; they did verify that a single bottle would be ok ("einer Flasche"), but looking at the site, they seem to cater in large part to resellers. So...any German Mefites want to do some shopping for me? :)
posted by icetaco at 9:47 AM on December 3, 2004

Mit rechnung is: By Invoice.

Email me, tell me where it is, I will send you your Liquer then PayPal me the money, that's your best bet.

posted by erratic frog at 9:55 AM on December 3, 2004

In other words: I can get anything on Rechnung here, send it to you, then you can reimburse me.
posted by erratic frog at 9:56 AM on December 3, 2004

What's the name of the liqueur?
posted by smackfu at 9:59 AM on December 3, 2004

Cardboard: You are incorrect.

It is like this: You check the box to Pay "via Rechnung" that means, you get the goods by post, with a bill (invoice) included, and you pay the bill upon receipt. Usually, you have 14 to 30 days.

But: You have to have a German address, most the time. Or at least, a Austrian or Swiss address or the order will most likely be refused.
posted by erratic frog at 10:06 AM on December 3, 2004

I prefer to think of it as "factually challenged."
posted by cardboard at 11:04 AM on December 3, 2004

Response by poster: Erratic frog: Really? Thank you!! I will be emailing you shortly! Vielen hertzlichen dank, von mir, und auch meinen Mann, der dieses getrank auch so liebt. :)

Smackfu: It's the Haselnußgeist from the Heinz-Vallendar company. It's really, amazingly good.
posted by icetaco at 12:12 PM on December 3, 2004

Hi neighbor. In Wa state, the liquor stores are very helpful in aquiring stock they don't normally carry. They have a long list of items they special order for people and if this elixir is as good as you say, they're likely have it on their special order list already. If not, they will check it's availability for you. You'll have to pay state taxes, but not shipping.
posted by roboto at 3:45 PM on December 3, 2004

Response by poster: Hmmm...thanks, Roboto. I wouldn't have considered that. I'll give it a shot! I'd be surprised, but it's certainly worth trying.

(It's REALLY good.)
posted by icetaco at 4:55 PM on December 3, 2004

That sounds delicious.

Oh: I see it says "Rechnung (nicht für Neukunden)". This means they won't let first-time customers pay "by invoice." You'll have to do Nachnahme, which means the post office will charge you when you receive the package (IIRC.) So, either way, this will only work inside Germay.
posted by muckster at 6:12 PM on December 3, 2004

Note that it's illegal to send alcohol through the USPS, so you'll probably have to have it FedExed to you, and you'll probably have to pay import duty on it.
posted by oaf at 8:06 PM on December 3, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks to all (who still might look at this little query's thread). I sure do love Metafilter, and all its helpful, thoughtful folk. And one way or the other, I'm going to get this stuff for my sweetie (even if it means we have to go back to the beautiful Rhine again someday - ah, well).
posted by icetaco at 10:35 PM on December 3, 2004

I ordered a book from a German store a while back using a somewhat rudimentary shopping cart page. At the end of the transaction it just said (in German) they would send me an e-mail so we could complete the transaction. I figured they would tell me then how to submit my credit card info, since the shopping cart hadn't asked for anything besides the name of the item I wanted and my e-mail address.

So I got the e-mail, and it just asked me to verify my shipping address. I did. I thought "hmm, that's odd, don't they want me to pay them?" And figured they would contact me when they realized I hadn't paid yet.

I was quite surprised when the book showed up on my doorstep a week or so later with a note included that said essentially "this book is still our property until you pay us. Please send payment to..." etc. So I paid them immediately and all was well. I thought it was awfully trusting of them to send a book all the way to the US without pre-payment. This just isn't really done much in the US, but I guess paying mit Rechnung must be common in Germany.
posted by litlnemo at 2:47 AM on December 4, 2004

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