Last Call: 11 Drunk Dry Abandoned Liquor Stores

Jersey Gurgle

New Jersey liquor store(images via: and Eco.Soul.Intellectual)

While many traditional urban liquor stores are bastions of the Free Enterprise philosophy, some social theorists (professional and otherwise) decry their perceived negative effects on communities. Take Studio 57 R&B Liquors in Newark, New Jersey for example. The store faced a firestorm of opposition led by Newark community leader Carolyn Kelley-Shabazz (above), who believes Studio 57 is the type of business that “attracts drugs, violence and loitering.” Will a community-led boycott serve to shutter Studio 57 for good? Stay tuned!

Bbbbut Socialism!

abandoned State of Montana liquor store(image via: CT Young)

Montana is one of 18 “control states” that, since the repeal of Prohibition in 1933, have opted to exercise a state monopoly over the sale of alcoholic beverages. The spare and severe store above was photographed by Flickr user CT Young, who perfectly captured the faded blue and violet overtones that together epitomize the look and feel of Big Sky Country.

Taiban Sympathizer

abandoned liquor store Taiban New Mexico(images via: Donkinci)

Taiban was founded in 1906 with high hopes for a bright future but the east-central New Mexico ranching town’s only claim to fame these days seems to be as a setting for photographers specializing in abandoned Americana. One of these is Ralf K, two of whose stark and evocative images appear above. There’s not much left of the Taiban Liquor Store besides a very rusty sign and innumerable sandblasted empty bottles in the collection bin out back.

abandoned liquor store Taiban New Mexico(image via: Robby Virus)

Roving cultural chronicler and photographer extraordinaire Robby Virus flexed his lens and un-shuttered his shutter in Taiban back on December 20th of 2009. There won’t be snow for Christmas by the looks of it, and no alcoholic beverages on sale to fuel any celebrations either – blame Taiban, not the Taliban.

Gimme An R!

abandoned Harlem liquor store sign LIQUO(image via: Robby Virus)

How long after this Harlem, New York liquor store closed did the iconic vertical sign outside lose its last letter? Will the “O” be next? Does it really matter when the incongruously tropical mural below draws most people’s attention? Kudos once more to Flickr user Robby Virus for snapping the store’s still snazzy “LIQUO” sign against a timelessly clean & pristine turquoise sky.