Collin Smith: Keeping good prices

New liquor store separates itself with low-cost, clean store

No matter how many particular businesses open in Craig, one can never presume that whatever is here is as good as it gets.

Elk Liquors, making its opening official by hanging bright "Grand Opening" signs from the Centennial Mall walls, might have something new.

And it's not just the wide-open selection at the store's 1111 W. Victory Way location, owner Kenny Chang said.

"We try to look more professional, more welcoming," he said. "We keep it clean, and we serve the customers.

"But we keep nice prices. That's the biggest thing we do. We keep nice prices."

Elk Liquors has 19 refrigerator doors full of beer, cold wine and other drinks, such as rows of different-sized, equally-chilly Jagermeister bottles.

Chang moved to Craig from Denver in March because a local acquaintance told him about the business possibilities here, he said.

"We need a good place for the future," he said, referring to his family. "We think there's more chance in this area."

Although the weather is a little windy, lately it's been blowing good fortune for Chang and his family, he said.

"It's good," Chang said. "We like it here."

Chang's brother owned a liquor store in Denver, which is where he learned the business, he said.

Still, counting his experience, deciding on what selection of beer, wine and liquor to stock his floor, shelves and refrigerators is a complicated question.

"That's a very complicated question," Chang said. "You have to look at the size of the box and what people like."

So far, Budweiser is the store's most popular beverage.

"We've tried some of the other micro beer," he said. "But, like anybody, you see it and you don't know it so you don't buy it. People need time to get used to that, something new."

It remains to be seen what will be popular in the future, Chang added.

"We haven't been open even one month, so you can't say anything," he said. "We just try to keep good prices, and that will take care of itself."

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