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Police State

July 4, 2012

A new bar recently opened downtown called Gin Palace. A bar with a lot of gin, so far so good. But one of their gimmicks is that they have cocktails on tap. Okay, I’m not so sure that’s a great thing. Kind of reminds me of the frozen margarita machines at The Hat (not that I remember those very well, for obvious reasons), but I’m willing to keep an open mind.

Well, not so the New York State Liquor Authority. They don’t cotton to no free-flowing gin:

On Monday night, though, the New York State Liquor Authority turned off those taps, declaring the free-flowing refreshments illegal, according to the bar’s owner, Ravi DeRossi. Asked about the action, a liquor authority spokesman, Bill Crowley, said only this in an e-mail: “No charges were brought against the place you asked me about. If we are investigating a matter, we cannot comment.”

Mr. DeRossi, who also a co-owner of such well-known watering holes as Death & Co. and Mayahuel, said, “I think what we’re doing is not illegal.” He said he believed that the liquor authority’s action was rooted in a Prohibition-era law that forbids a bar from taking alcohol from a bottle, pouring it into another and serving it. The rule was created to protect consumers against unscrupulous tavern keepers who might be adulterating their liquor. “But in 1989, they changed the law,” Mr. DeRossi said. “People wanted to serve frozen margaritas.” The rule was amended to allow for the use of a “machine” that holds an alcoholic mix of more than one gallon, and is in “continuous motion.”

If Mr. DeRossi prevails, his efforts will extend protection to the many other bars in New York City that offer draft cocktails — none of whom have been stopped by state officials. “They told us they were choosing us because we got the most press,” Mr. DeRossi said. “There are 30 other bars that are doing cocktails on tap. But no one’s getting as much attention for it.”

Fuckers. I never wanted gin on tap, but now I do. Fight the power.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. JCo permalink
    July 4, 2012 1:08 pm

    Who doesn’t want gin on tap?

  2. July 5, 2012 11:28 am

    Thanks for the linkage! What a stupid thing for the NYSLA to be wasting their time on. To quote Elvin Bishop: Let it flow!

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