Category: Alcohol and Liquor

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New Licenses For Utah

The Utah Legislature today in a special session passed a bill (S.B. 4001) to increase the number of restaurant licenses available in the state. The bill will now go to Governor Herbert , who is expected to sign. 50 additional full-service restaurant licenses and 40 limited-service restaurant licenses will be available as of July 1, 2012. Currently, … Continue Reading

Implementation of I-1183 Remains On Schedule; Washington Supreme Court Argument Set for May 17, 2012

From our colleague Hunter Ferguson:  The implementation of I-1183 remains on schedule. Last Friday, April 6, a Washington Supreme Court Commissioner issued an order denying an emergency motion for injunctive relief to halt the implementation of I-1183. The motion was filed by the plaintiffs in Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention v. State. The … Continue Reading

Tasting Rooms Not Restaurants Says California Appeals Court

In a recent 3-0 decision, a California Appeals Court sided with Freemark Abbey Winery in its attempt to move its wine store and tasting room into a building in St. Helena which already contained a restaurant. The decision reversed the district courts granting of a preliminary injunction which would have stopped Freemark’s move entirely until … Continue Reading

Stoel Rives Holds California Wine Seminar

On March 8 and 9, Stoel Rives cosponsored, with Kennedy/Jenks Consultants, the 6th Annual Best Practices for Owning and Operating a Winery, held in Napa, CA. The well attended event covered such topics as valuation, water, energy, and branding. Stoel attorney’s Chris Hermann, John McKinsey, and Jake Storms were all panel speakers with John McKinsey … Continue Reading

I-1183 Challenge Update

By Hunter O. Ferguson, Stoel Rives With a little more than two months remaining before I-1183 is scheduled to take full effect on June 1, 2012, the implementation of the initiative will turn on whether the Cowlitz County Superior Court concludes that section 302 of the initiative cannot be severed from the other provisions approved … Continue Reading

Site Visit to Heater Allen

On February 16th, Stoel Rives LLP held its 5th Annual Law of Wine Seminar at The Allison in Newberg. The seminar focused on the trends and developments in the wine industry as well as touched on issues facing the distilled spirits and brewery industries. After presenting at the seminar, three Stoel attorneys Jeremy Sacks, Reilley … Continue Reading

Washington Wine, Beer & Distilleries Law Seminar – March 15, 2012

Please join us for our inaugural Washington Winery, Brewery & Distillery law seminar at the Columbia Winery in Woodinville, Washington on Thursday, March 15. Panels to include these hot topics, plus much more: Privatization/I-1183 Trademarks Employment Laws Tasting Room Operations Taxes For more information and registration visit: http://www.stoel.com/showevent.aspx?Show=9199… Continue Reading

Idaho Wine, Beer & Distilleries Law Seminar – Thursday, March 1, 2012

Please join us for our inaugural Idaho Wine, Beer & Distillers law seminar at the Boise Centre in Boise, ID on Thursday, March 1, 2012. Panels to include these hot topics, plus much more: Start-ups (licensing, permitting and business formation) Trademarks (protecting your investment) Distribution and other key contracts Land use issues Employee matters For … Continue Reading

5th Annual Oregon Wine Law Seminar – February 16, 2012

Please join us for our 5th Annual Oregon Wine Law Seminar at the Allison Inn and Spa in Newberg, Oregon on Thursday, February 16. Topics and panels include start-ups, trademark registration, employment, privatization of OLCC liquor sales, land use and a panel discussion on alternating premises (wine/beer/spirits). This seminar is complimentary to all industry members. … Continue Reading

A Check-In with the Idaho Wine Industry

An update from our colleagues Allison Blackman and Nicole Hancock: The State of Idaho is most infamously know for the potato but the recently reenergized Idaho Wine Commission, vintners, and wineries across the state hope to soon add Idaho Wines to the Gem State’s reputation. Idaho wines regularly net honors in regional and national competitions, and the … Continue Reading

Cowlitz County Superior Court Denies Motion For Preliminary Injunction Against I-1183

Defenders of I-1183 received a holiday gift last week from the Cowlitz County Superior Court. On Thursday, December 22, 2011, the Court issued two important rulings in the declaratory judgment action challenging the constitutionality of I-1183. First, the Court granted the motion to intervene brought a group of supports of I-1183 led by Costco and … Continue Reading

TTB Publishes Notice of Rulemaking for Inwood Valley AVA

On December 5, 2011, the TTB published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (Notice No. 125) regarding the establishment of the Inwood Valley Viticultural Area in Shasta, California. If established, the new AVA would consist of a 28,000 acre area, the vast majority of which is currently not dedicated to, or known for, vineyards. The TTB … Continue Reading

Utah to Consider Privatization Models

The recent move by Washington voters to end state control of liquor sales, combined with ongoing corruption scandals within the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, is causing Utah lawmakers to renew privatization discussions. Support appears to be growing to limit the state’s involvement in liquor sales at least to some degree.  Utah is among the … Continue Reading

TTB Rules to Expand Sonoma AVAs

On Wednesday November 16, the TTB published a ruling (T.D. TTB-97, available here) amending the federal definition of the Russian River Valley viticultural area and the Northern Sonoma viticultural area, by expanding each. The action first began in August of 2008 when Gallo Family Vineyards submitted a petition for the amendment. After receiving numerous comments both … Continue Reading

IRS Publishes New Audit Technique Guide for Wineries and Vineyards

The IRS recently issued a new Audit Technique Guide (“ATG”, available here) applicable to winery and vineyard operations. As with previous IRS guidance, the new ATG is meant to be used by IRS examiners; however the IRS anticipates the industry will rely upon the publication as a guide. It should be noted, the ATG should not … Continue Reading

California State Water Board Moves on Frost Protection Program

The State Water Resources Control Board (“Board”) held a workshop last week on a proposed regulation designed to assess and mitigate water use from the Russian River by growers in Mendocino and Sonoma Counties during frost season. Though no formal action took place, the Board received numerous comments on the proposed regulation. The regulation would … Continue Reading

Changes to Utah’s Liquor Laws

The 2011 legislative session wrapped up last night with several changes being made to Utah’s liquor laws, including: Converting 40 tavern only licenses into 15 full restaurant licenses and 25 limited restaurant licenses (beer and wine only) Allowing a hotel guest to order one drink at a time through room service Permitting alcohol to be … Continue Reading

TOM CRONE NAMED ASSISTANT ADMINISTRATOR FOR FIELD OPERATIONS

This was announced last week. Bernie Kipp has known Tom Crone for over 30 years.  He hired Bernie for Regulations and later as District Director.  He’s a good guy with a practical approach.  He would be the final decision maker in any action against field permitee.  TOM CRONE NAMED ASSISTANT ADMINISTRATOR FOR FIELD OPERATIONS TTB Administrator John … Continue Reading

Conjunctive Labeling Comes to Sonoma County

               With the turn of the calendar and after nearly a year of political wrangling, conjunctive labeling will be the norm for Sonoma County wineries beginning in 2014. Passed by unanimous vote in both the state assembly and senate in August and signed by Governor Schwartzenegger at the end of September, AB 1798 will require … Continue Reading

OPB Think Outloud

What a great way to spend a Wednesday morning.  I joined Portland’s thought leaders on all-thing-alcohol this morning at St. Jack restaurant, where we broadcasted live on OPB.  A lively discussion of Oregon’s alcohol industry was lead by On Air Host Emily Harris.  Reasons behind Oregon’s alcohol industry boom, the State’s history with alcohol, and … Continue Reading
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