Add wine and booze to the long list of things you can get delivered to your home in Pennsylvania within an hour or two.
Effective today, Instacart, a new-to-Philadelphia grocery-delivery service, will buy your bottles from a state store and run them to your door in short order.
The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board offers home delivery of some products, but it takes three to five days.
Instacart, which recently won delivery authority from the LCB, uses freelance personal shoppers to shop at various stores for its customers. It has no delivery fleet, warehouses or inventory, compared to its larger rival Peapod. So far, Instacart patronizes Whole Foods, Super Fresh and BJ’s Wholesale Club, in addition to some state Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores.
Groceries are marked up. The minimum order is $10. Delivery costs $7.99, but drops to $3.99 for orders over $35.
Wine and spirit bottle prices seem to be comparable to those on the LCB's website. But LCB's sale prices are not reflected on Instacart's list, such as a current $3 off deal on Grey Goose pear vodka. Not all of a state store's inventory is available through Instacart's site and app.
Instacart's Philadelphia manager, George Shotz, said Instacart's shoppers are over 21 and have undergone training to check the IDs of customers. They will not leave the order at the door if the customer is not there, he said.
Instacart, which started in San Francisco in 2012, also operates in Boston, Chicago and Washington.
Instacart serves most of downtown and Northwest Philadelphia (map here), plus a few surrounding neighborhoods: Center City, South Philadelphia, University City, Kingsessing, Cobbs Creek, Overbrook, Wynnefield, Bala Cynwyd, Wynnewood, Penn Valley, Manayunk, Roxborough, Chestnut Hill, Mt Airy, Germantown, East Falls, Nicetown, North Philadelphia, Fishtown, Fairmount, Northern Liberties, Lower Merion, Gladwyne, Ardmore, Haverford, Bryn Mawr, Villanova, Havertown and parts of Upper Darby.