AAIAC

The Alliance of Alcohol Industry Attorneys & Consultants is a select organization of alcoholic beverage licensing and compliance professionals.

Wet your whistle while you work

Last-Call---your-source-for-Tennessee-liquor-news Last Call - Your Source for Tennessee Liquor

Here’s an often-heard question with a surprising answer.  Can I drink while working as a bartender, server or clerk at a liquor store? 

To the chagrin of the champions of temperance, Tennessee does not prohibit the consumption of alcoholic beverages by employees working at on-premise license locations, such as restaurants, bars, hotels, nightclubs, stadiums and other establishments. In addition, clerks, managers and other employees can drink tastings offered to consumers at retail liquor stores.

On this particular question, we find ourselves on the side of temperance. It is a bad idea to allow employees to drink on the job, particularly when they are servicing and selling alcohol. For liability reasons, we encourage employers to establish rules that prohibit drinking on the job. 

That said, drinking on the job is legal at bars and restaurants, with the following caveats:

B-Girl Rule.  Tennessee prohibits customers from buying drinks for servers and other on-premise employees. Minors.  The drinking age is 21 and employees under the age of 21 cannot drink. Intoxication.  It is illegal to serve a visibly intoxicated person, meaning that a bartender cannot get visibly drunk on the job.

To the collective chagrin of hundreds of loyal Last Call followers, we find ourselves singing the oh-so merry melody sung by Disney’s diminutive cartoon chaps:

Just whistle while you work

And cheerfully together we can tidy up the place.

So hum a merry tune.

It won’t take long when there’s a song to help you set the pace. 

Now we all need a drink…

Continue reading
  135 Hits
  0 Comments
135 Hits
0 Comments

Who do I have to card when selling alcohol in Tennessee?

Last-Call---your-source-for-Tennessee-liquor-news Last Call - Your Source for Tennessee Liquor

Unless you are living under a rock, you know you need a new driver’s license – a REAL ID – in order to clear TSA Security at airports and to enter secured federal facilities, such as military bases. The fear of flying, or more accurately, the fear of not being able to fly, has inspired action among REAL ID applicants and generated long lines at Tennessee driver’s license centers. The deadline for having a REAL ID is October 1, 2020.

With all the hoopla surrounding REAL ID, we have to ask:  Do I need a REAL ID in order to purchase alcohol in Tennessee?

So far, the answer is no. We believe the Tennessee ABC will continue to allow restaurants, bars, grocery stores and other license holders to accept valid Tennessee Driver’s licenses – regardless of whether they are REAL ID.

Of course, individual beer boards and local police may see things differently; however, nothing in the carding laws requires a REAL ID.

All this talk over REAL ID raises a perennial question: Who has to card everyone? Drum roll, please. 

Beer – off-premises (C stores, groceries, pharmacies) - Yes, card everyone Beer – on-premises (beer bars) - No, carding is discretionary Wine and spirits off-premises (liquor stores) – Yes, card everyone beginning July 1, 2014 Wine stores (groceries) – Yes, card everyone beginning July 1, 2016 Wine and spirits on-premises (restaurants, bars) – No, carding is discretionary

Burned out on Christmas carols, we are cranking Rihanna's "Cheers (Drink to That)"

There's a party at the bar

Everybody put ya glasses up and I drink to that

I drink to that

We have often opined that universal carding is an utter waste of time – why spend any time looking at the ID of a silver-haired elderly gentleman when you should be focusing on ID’s of college-age kids?

However, given the significant number of servers and clerks that fail beer board and ABC stings by not even asking for an ID, we believe universal carding works. Universal carding takes the discretion out of the hands of the server and requires staff to card everyone.

Restaurants, bars and other on-premise establishments do not have to card – but we strongly encourage folks to require universal carding.

The Metro Nashville Beer Board has publicly indicated that it has increased stings, as we blogged about here. Likewise, the Tennessee ABC is expected to continue to focus on age ID stings. Your license is at risk.

Continue reading
  115 Hits
  0 Comments
115 Hits
0 Comments

Metro Nashville Beer Board rachets up sales to minors enforcement

Last-Call---your-source-for-Tennessee-liquor-news Last Call - Your Source for Tennessee Liquor

At yesterday’s Metro Nashville Beer Board meeting, department staff informed the Beer Board that the Beer Inspectors have devised a more efficient method to conduct age compliance checks and sting establishments that sell to minors.

The proof is in the pudding: yesterday’s agenda included 19 citations for sales to minors.

Beer board staff expects a continued uptick in the number of citations from failed sale to minor stings over the indefinite future.  We find ourselves humming “Bad Boys” from the Fox TV hit “Cops”

Bad boys, bad boys

Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do

When they come for you?

The Metro Beer Board and the Tennessee ABC conduct fair stings, in our humble opinion.  Nearly every law enforcement agency in Tennessee uses a real undercover informant, who presents his or her real driver’s license that clearly shows the person is underage.  There is no need to resort to chicanery given the high number of failures from clean stings.

We strongly encourage Nashville restaurants, bars, music, entertainment and sports venues and other purveyors of beer to double-down on training and reevaluate the effectiveness of age identification procedures. We are big fans of Red Box ID, explained at our post here.  

Based on today’s report, you can expect a visit from the Beer Inspectors.

Last Call is your first stop for Tennessee liquor news and information.

Continue reading
  294 Hits
  0 Comments
294 Hits
0 Comments

Distillers showcase finest at Grains and Grits preview party

Last-Call---your-source-for-Tennessee-liquor-news Last Call - Your Source for Tennessee Liquor

More than 30 distillers gathered for the invitation-only preview party for the 2019 Grains & Grits in Townsend, Tennessee this past weekend (Nov. 1-2). Little Arrow Outdoor Resort hosted the festivities and we snapped some photos below. A big shout-out to Kim Mitchell and all the folks at the Blount Partnership and the Tennessee Distillers Guild for making the 2019 festival a smashing success.

Continue reading
  105 Hits
  0 Comments
105 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty & O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators (NCSLA) annual Southern Regional Conference

Flaherty & O’Hara is pleased and honored to attend and be an invited speaker at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators (NCSLA) annual Southern Regional Conference in New Orleans, LA, the week of October 21, 2019. Our associate Eric Altpeter was on a panel discussing cannabis laws and their intersection with alcohol beverage laws […]

The post Flaherty & O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators (NCSLA) annual Southern Regional Conference appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  184 Hits
  0 Comments
184 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty & O’Hara at the Annual Conference of the National Association of Licensing & Compliance Professionals

Flaherty & O’Hara is pleased to have sponsored, attended and been a trade show participant in, and honored to have been invited to be a presenter at the annual conference of the National Association of Licensing & Compliance Professionals (NALCP or “Nalcap”) held in Denver, CO. October 15-18, 2019. R.J. O’Hara was a panel member […]

The post Flaherty & O’Hara at the Annual Conference of the National Association of Licensing & Compliance Professionals appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  170 Hits
  0 Comments
170 Hits
0 Comments

How to pay your Metro Nashville beer privilege tax online

blog

How to pay your Metro Nashville beer privilege tax online

Oct 11, 2019

With the addition of a handy dandy “Pay Now” button, the Metro Nashville Beer Permit Board has greatly simplified payment of the $100 annual privilege tax for beer permits. Beer permit privilege taxes are generally due by the end of the year. Metro Nashville’s is now available for payment.

Here’s how to pay your privilege tax. Log in to the Nashville e-Permits

Enter the permit address and select the “address” button below the search bar, then click enter. Your list of permits should appear on the next screen. Select a beer permit and you should see the green “Pay Now” button in the top right corner. When you click the “Pay Now” button, you’ll be prompted to enter your credit card to pay the $100 annual privilege tax. A 2.3% convenience fee is charged, so the total will be $102.30. Do not forget to click the “Submit Payment” button in the bottom right corner. 

We hear Doris Day crooning “Easy as Pie”

Easy as pie, anyone can do it

Easy as pie, as soon as you’re hep

Easy as pie, there’s nothin’ to it

Baby, give out with a step

A shout out to our newest liquor lawyer, Jan Margaret Craig, for step-by-step instructions on renewing your privilege tax.

Continue reading
  40 Hits
  0 Comments
40 Hits
0 Comments

Panic at the Disco: Where is my liquor license renewal?

blog

Panic at the Disco: Where is my liquor license renewal?

Sep 19, 2019

Phone lines have been lighting up with the same question from bars, restaurants, hotels, and yes, even discos.

I think I’ve renewed my liquor license on time, but have not received anything from RLPS, the on-line filing system used by the Tennessee ABC.  Nary an e-mail and nothing shows in RLPS. Wassup?

Callers share a common refrain: “My license expires in a few days. I’m worried that I will have to stop selling liquor and the wholesalers won’t deliver.”

Folks are understandably concerned.  Most beer wholesalers, for example, refuse to deliver a single can of Bud if the restaurant or bar does not post a valid beer permit.

Our advice: Chill. If you have timely filed a complete ABC renewal, we seriously doubt the ABC will tell you to stop selling alcohol.

We qualify things with the lawyerly term “complete.”  Complete means:

You have filed all required renewal documents with the ABC before your license expires You paid the renewal fee You have no outstanding citations, and Your establishment is in good standing with Revenue, meaning that you have filed all tax returns, paid all taxes and your bond is current.

We can’t help singing One of the Drunks by Panic at the Disco:

Never dry

Every day you’re thirsty, bourbon high

Sip up ‘til you’re tipsy, night’s young

If you are nervous about the approval of your renewal, your first step should be to make sure your renewal is “complete.”

The ABC prioritizes new applications and other more time-sensitive priorities. We do not fault the ABC for occasionally falling behind on renewals.

For anyone anxiously awaiting issuance of their liquor license – days before trying to open a new restaurant, bar or hotel – placing a priority on new applications makes sense.

Unfortunately, RLPS does not allow you to see the status of renewals. With new applications, you can check the processing status of the application to see if it has been assigned to a reviewer, for example. Without that option for renewals, you are in the dark.

We find ourselves wistfully wanton for a return to the golden era when you picked up the landline and called Melissa Proctor to make sure that everything was fine with your renewal.

Chill.

Continue reading
  41 Hits
  0 Comments
41 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty & O’Hara at CLE International Wine, Beer & Spirits annual conference in Charlotte, NC

Flaherty & O’Hara is pleased and honored to attend and be an invited panel member at CLE International Wine, Beer & Spirits annual conference in Charlotte, NC, September 16-17, 2019. Our partner R.J. O’Hara participated on a panel discussing the current status of direct-to-consumer shipping laws and relevant new legislation and case law, as well as the […]

The post Flaherty & O’Hara at CLE International Wine, Beer & Spirits annual conference in Charlotte, NC appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  179 Hits
  0 Comments
179 Hits
0 Comments

How to ban firearms in Tennessee businesses

blog

How to ban firearms in Tennessee businesses

Sep 12, 2019

Following recent high-profile announcements about carrying guns at Walmart and Kroger, we thought folks might like to know how to legally ban weapons on their property. 

Last week, Walmart and Kroger asked their shoppers to leave their guns at home.  Tennessee is an open carry state, where citizens can obtain a permit to carry a gun in most public places, including restaurants, bars, hotels and music venues. 

We find ourselves humming Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Saturday Night Special.

            Mr. Saturday night special

            Got a barrel that’s blue and cold

            Ain’t good for nothin’

            But put a man six feet in a hole

            Oh, it’s the Saturday night special, for twenty dollars you can buy yourself one too

Walmart and Kroger merely asked shoppers not to bring their guns. The retail giants did not ban guns.

Tennessee businesses can prohibit the legal carrying of firearms by posting signs that state “NO FIREARMS ALLOWED” in letters that are at least one inch high and eight inches wide.  Updated in 2017, the law also requires that the sign state: “As authorized by T.C.A. §39-17-1359.” And if that’s not enough, the sign also has to include the universal “No Handgun” sign, inside a circle at least four inches in diameter.

Here is a sample:

Image title

Keep in mind that law enforcement officers may still carry firearms, regardless of sign postings.

Businesses must post the sign at every public entrance to the business.  We recommend that the signs be posted at patios, backdoors and other portals that could arguably be considered a public entrance.  If you want to prohibit guns, better safe than sorry.

Carrying a gun on a property with proper signage is a misdemeanor that carries a fine of up to $500.

Continue reading
  43 Hits
  0 Comments
43 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty-O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators’ annual Central-Western Regional Conference

Flaherty & O’Hara is pleased and honored to attend and be an invited panel member at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators’ annual Central-Western Regional Conference in Portland, OR, September 9-11, 2019. Our partner R.J. O’Hara participated on a panel discussing the character of possible future alcohol operations as they evolve over the next […]

The post Flaherty-O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators’ annual Central-Western Regional Conference appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  161 Hits
  0 Comments
161 Hits
0 Comments

Tennessee passes plethora of new liquor laws in 2019

blog

Tennessee passes plethora of new liquor laws in 2019

Aug 26, 2019

Here are this year’s highlights from the 2019 legislative session when it comes to liquor laws.

College Sports Sales. P.C. 99 amended the alcohol code’s definition of “sports authority facility” to include “any facility on the campus of a public institution of higher education that is designed and used for school-sanctioned sporting events.” In effect, the law allows the lawful selling of wine, beer, and other alcoholic beverages at more collegiate stadiums and arenas. This is a major jump from last year’s related legislation, which defined “sports authority facility” narrowly and only allowed alcohol at MTSU and TSU. P.C. 99, on the other hand, applies to all counties.

This legislation comes at an opportune time, as the SEC lifted its ban on stadium-wide alcohol sales and allowed individual schools to decide if hooch could be sold at college games. The University of Tennessee’s concessionaire was recently approved for beer and wine sales at Thompson-Boling Arena, Neyland Stadium and Regal Soccer Stadium. The Alice Cooper show at Thompson-Boling will be the historic first show at UT with booze.

We understand that Vanderbilt University is currently debating whether to fall in line with other SEC schools that allow alcohol sales.
FOR MORE INFORMATION

Alcohol Sales at the Zoo. P.C. 300 may bring out your inner party animal. As of this May, it became legal for the Nashville and Knoxville Zoos to sell alcohol during regular hours. You can now take your kids to zoo … and enjoy it even more. P.C. 300, which can be found here, amends a law that explicitly prohibited the sale of wine, beer, or alcoholic beverages during regular operating hours outside of special fundraising events.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Premier Type Tourist Resorts. The following premier-type tourist resorts received approval, which will allow on-premises alcohol consumption:

Hermitage Golf Course in Davidson County Legacy Farms in Lebanon Weir Park in Clay County Center for the Arts in Murfreesboro El Fogon Restaurant in Hixson Lebanon Theater in Lebanon The Blake at Kingsport in Kingsport Legacy Farms in Lebanon Flat Hollow Marina in Campbell County The 121 Hotel in Nashville Central Park in Livingston Sip-n-Scoop in College Grove 

Server Permits. P.C. 435 reduced the training time to 3.5 hours. Previously, the ABC required five hours of training.

 FOR MORE INFORMATION 

Wine and Wineries. This year’s legislature enacted a slew of laws about wine. 2019 saw the creation of the Tennessee Wine and Grape Board, to support the growth of Tennessee’s wine industry. P.C. 444 gives the Governor the job of dubbing five individuals (of the seven that compose the board) to certain positions, including one grape producer and two members who are involved in the production, marketing, sales, journalism, or education of the industry. Among the Board’s goals will be to increase winery numbers and improve wine quality.

FOR MORE INFORMATION 

Conjures up the overplayed tune Brandy by one-hit wonder Looking Glass:

Brandy, you're a fine girl (you're a fine girl)

What a good wife you would be (such a fine girl)

Yeah, your eyes could steal a sailor from the sea

We’re going to need a bottle of fine Tennessee wine to get that song out of our heads and forget those sexist lyrics.

P.C. 74 further erodes the three-tier system for wine. The bill eliminates wholesalers for distribution to satellite facilities for wineries that pay taxes on 50,000 gallons or less of wine during a calendar year. For larger wineries, the law is now permissive, allowing wineries that produce more than 50,000 gallons to self-distribute to satellite facilities, at the option of the wholesaler.

FOR MORE INFORMATION 

What’s in a name? P.C. 263 renamed the “direct shipper’s license” in Tennessee’s Code’s alcohol licensing provisions to “winery direct shipper’s license.” Was anyone confused about not being able to ship spirits?

WIGS. P.C. 136 removed a pesky requirement for food store retailers. Before this bill’s time, grocery stores were required to obtain a new certificate of compliance from the local government every two years. Now, the certificate will remain legit unless a change of ownership or location occurs. The catch? It doesn’t apply to liquor stores.

The bill does make life a bit harder for retail food stores selling wine: now, each retail food store has to include the first and last name of all clerks for purposes of Tennessee’s responsible vendor training program. Before amending this provision, retail food stores were only required to pay a fee corresponding to however many certified clerks the store had. Now, stores will have a few more hoops to jump through.

Speaking of clerks, P.C. 136 reduced training time for WIGS and responsible beer vendor clerks from 2 to 1 hour. Now, WIGS clerks responsible beer vendor applicants can become certified with only one hour of training.

FOR MORE INFORMATION 

Distilleries & Manufacturers. A parity bill passed this session, extending the hours a distillery can sell its products on Sundays and abolishing a relic from pre-ABC days. Now, distilleries are able to sell on Sundays during the same hours as retailers (10 AM until 11 PM).

The bill also did away with a sunset provision that would have precluded distilleries from having interests in restaurants through a trust. Distilleries can continue to have a direct or indirect interest in a restaurant that has a license for on-premises consumption -- so long as the interest is held in an irrevocable distillery trust.

Distilleries can now allow open carry of beer, wine and spirits from an adjacent LBD and have common premises under Section 4 of P.C. 435. 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

No more Revenue Manufacturing License.  This year’s legislature did away with another pre-ABC artifact via P.C. 301. The law abolished the $1,000 privilege tax that distilleries, wineries and high gravity brewers were obligated to pay to the county.

FOR MORE INFORMATION 

Beale Street.  P.C. 435 allows bars and restaurants in the Beale Street Historic District to serve customers seated at tables along the outside wall of the establishment, provided Memphis allows the practice.  Note that this section does not specifically impact the service of beer, just wine, high gravity beer and spirits.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Scooters and Booze. Scooters are now considered motor-driven vehicles for the purposes of DUI laws. Previously, Tennessee’s Motor and Other Vehicles laws did not specifically include scooters. Seeing as scooters have become Nashville’s newest Millennial plague – the Hot Tub Party Bus may be a close second – and caused numerous tragic accidents, it is no surprise that the legislature has now targeted scooters directly.

The Tennessee Code’s Rules of the Road chapter now includes a new definition – “electric scooter” – and with it comes a host of liabilities for those who decide to take one of those death traps for a spin. The definition includes a requirement of having a maximum speed of no more than twenty miles per hour.

In enacting P.C. 388, this year’s legislature tacked on scooters to a law concerning electric bicycles. The new section of the electric bicycle law indicates that, although scooters are not subject to the Tennessee Financial Responsibility Law, the Uniform Classified and Commercial Driver License Act, and Title 55’s chapters regarding title and registration, they are subject to the laws that apply to bicycles and electric bicycles.

That means DUI laws now apply to scooters.

Another section added by this year’s legislature is worded like a threat. The newly enacted section states that, although scooters are excluded from certain chapters of the Code, nothing precludes counties, municipalities, or metropolitan forms of government from regulating, controlling, or banning the use and operation of scooters within its boundaries. The quasi-threat is subject only to a limitation that ordinances must be reasonably related to promoting and protecting the health and safety of riders, operators, pedestrians, and other motorists. We see this as part of an effort to combat safety risks, as Nashville Fire has reported over 70 scooter-related injuries in the past few months.

A failed wine bill bears mentioning. If enacted, the bill would have expanded the ability of art galleries to serve wine to gallery patrons by lowering from 90 percent to 80 percent the amount of revenue a gallery has to receive from artwork sales in order to serve wine free of charge. Certain versions of the amendment sought to allow galleries to also serve high alcohol content beer as well. Lawmakers certainly had the Nashville and Front Street Art Crawls in mind.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

RIP. A host of bills never saw the light of day.

- A law designed to expand the amount of wine an individual could have shipped to their residence dies in committee. Were those Goose or Rooster fingerprints on that bill …

- A bill allowing publicly-elected officials to own a retail liquor store or wholesaler died this session. You know what they say. Don’t mix business with pleasure …

- Alcohol delivery apps like Drizly might have lost its Nashville presence if a bill unintentionally directed at the popular application had not died. The bill would have required alcohol delivery apps to apply for and obtain a delivery service license. We aren’t sure if this was a caption bill, but we do know that it failed.

- A bill to allow stronger wines in grocery stores was unsuccessful. It would also have permitted grocery stores to sell a wider variety of wine coolers.

- There must be a rumor going around that vaping and inhaling alcohol is quite popular in the Volunteer State. A bill extending the time a license is suspended (from 60 days to 90 days) for engaging in such activity came before the Tennessee legislature this year … again. Our question is this: does this doodad even exist in Tennessee? Of course, if it did, it would certainly have dangerous implications – especially for those who are calorie-conscious and could use the device to get drunk without the guilt. But we’ve found no evidence of these devices being used in Tennessee or any other state for that matter.

- An effort to deliver more money to local coffers by raising beer application fees failed this session. The now-deceased bill would have brought the cost of a beer permit more in line with liquor licenses, whose fees are generally much higher.

- High Gravity gets higher … Among this year’s failures was a bill that redefined “beer.” If this had passed, a beer with an alcohol content of 18% by volume or less would be regulated by counties, while beer with alcoholic content greater than 18% would be regulated by ABC.

- Although wineries are permitted to self-distribute in limited circumstances, an attempt to expand self-distribution to Tennessee breweries died in session this year.

- A bill increasing DUI penalties proved unsuccessful. The bill, which sought to increase the penalty for second and third DUI convictions to a Class E felony, would have prevented a large group of Tennesseans from holding liquor licenses or from obtaining server permits. Safe to say this is a death some in the industry aren’t grieving over.

Go Elizabeth!  A huge shout out to Summer Associate and Vanderbilt law student extraordinaire Elizabeth Boston for her assistance researching and writing this post.

Click here to learn more about Waller’s alcoholic beverage team.

Continue reading
  49 Hits
  0 Comments
49 Hits
0 Comments

Are Certificates of Compliance headed for extinction in Tennessee for liquor and grocery stores?

blog

Are Certificates of Compliance headed for extinction in Tennessee for liquor and grocery stores?

Aug 19, 2019

The Tennessee legislature recently eliminated the Certificates of Compliance requirement for renewal of wine in grocery store (which we affectionately call “WIGS”) licenses.  However, all new WIGS applications still require the dreaded Certificate of Compliance.

A recent rule change by the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission eliminated the newspaper notice requirement for retail liquor stores to file Certificates of Compliance.  Like a tree falling in the woods, why bother if you don’t tell anyone about a new store.

Makes us wonder if the days of Certificates of Compliance might be numbered.

Beware: a handful of cities have local ordinances that require newspaper ads for Certificates of Compliance, including Metro Nashville.

Makes us want to play Jerrod Niemann’s overly auto-tuned hit Drink to That All Night:

Everybody knows, its gonna be one of those

I can drink to that all night

That’s the stuff I like

That’s the kind of party makes you throw your hands up high

Continue reading
  50 Hits
  0 Comments
50 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty & O’Hara Joins Women of the Vine & Spirits as a Corporate Member

Flaherty & O’Hara is proud to announce they have joined Women of the Vine & Spirits as a Bronze Corporate Member. Partners Kaitlynd Kruger and Chris O’Hara and Associate Ellen Freeman have joined as Member Employees. Women of the Vine & Spirits (WOTVS) is the world’s leading organization dedicated to empowering and advancing women in […]

The post Flaherty & O’Hara Joins Women of the Vine & Spirits as a Corporate Member appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  180 Hits
  0 Comments
180 Hits
0 Comments

Flaherty & O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators

Flaherty & O’Hara partners R.J. O’Hara and Kaitlynd Kruger, along with associate Ellen Freeman, attended the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators. The event was held at the Seelbach Hilton in Louisville, Kentucky from June 16th – 19th. R.J. O’Hara was invited to participate in one of the panels, “Facing the Reality of the ‘New […]

The post Flaherty & O’Hara at the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  520 Hits
  0 Comments
520 Hits
0 Comments

Spirits and Soul Fest puts the whiskey back into Memphis

blog

Spirits & Soul Fest puts the whiskey back into Memphis

May 3, 2019

Old Dominick Distillery and the Tennessee Whiskey Trail hosted the first Tennessee whiskey festival in Memphis since at least Prohibition.

On Friday, April 26, more than 20 Tennessee distillers from across the state poured samples and educated consumers about Tennessee spirits at the South Main Trolley Night in Memphis’ Historic Arts District. 

Spirits & Soul festivities concluded with a block party outside Old Dominick, while industry experts conducted two educational seminars:

Stories from pioneers of the TN Whiskey Trail and its economic development impact Fundamentals of classic cocktail class

We snapped a few photos of this historic occasion for your enjoyment. 

You can read more about the Fest hereThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like full-size copies of our photos.

Continue reading
  48 Hits
  0 Comments
48 Hits
0 Comments

Alexa: Play Tennessee server permit training

blog

Alexa: Play Tennessee server permit training

Apr 11, 2019

With next to no ado, the Tennessee ABC has been quietly approving online courses for server permit training. A list of approved courses is provided here.

Although not quite ready for prime time on your smart speaker, online training is for real in Tennessee.

“With online training, everybody gets the correct information, every time,” notes Kim Pouncey at Top Shelf, an ABC-certified online training course. “Servers can now take training on their own schedule, on their own time, even pausing the training as needed.”

In order to obtain an on-line server permit, servers must:

Create an RLPS account. Former ABC Assistant Director, Zack Blair offers a tutorial for obtaining an RLPS ID in the video above. Log into your RLPS account. Under licenses, select permits and proceed with your Server Permit Application. You will need to upload an ID. We suggest photographing your driver’s license and emailing it to yourself. You will need a credit card to pay the $20 application fee. Once your application is complete, the system generates your RLPS ID#. You will be required to enter your RLPS ID# before you can take the course.

Former Director Blair has detailed instructions for the On-line Server Permit Application in this video.  

You must complete your Server Permit Application within 30 days. If you take more than 30 days, you have to start over and pay the $20 fee again.

Certified online courses will collect your RLPS ID in connection with your online training. If the system functions properly, the training company enters this number into the RLPS, enters your score and the course information will automatically be added to your RLPS account.

Brownsville Station’s one-hit wonder “Smokin' in the Boy’s Room” is on point:  

   Sitting in the classroom, thinking it’s a drag

   Listening to the teacher rap, just ain’t my bag

   The noon bells rings, you know that’s my cue

   I’m gonna meet the boys on floor number two

   Smokin' in the boy’s room

Once the TABC verifies all of your course information and approves your application, the TABC will send you an email telling you to log into your RLPS account to download a copy of your Server Permit.  State law still requires that all servers keep a copy of their server permit card on them. If you are like us and tend to misplace things, take a picture and keep it in your phone.

Servers should email or deliver a copy of their Server Permit card to their employer. ABC rules require that licensees maintain a copy at the restaurant or bar. The ABC audits server permit compliance and having copies on file in the office makes this process much simpler.

If you do it the old-fashioned way and take a class in person, your RLPS# is required before you can attend the class so your instructor has your information to enter into the RLPS. As with online courses, once the TABC approves everything they will send you an email telling you to log in to your RLPS account and download your permit.

We understand that John Pallas and Hayword Reed at the ABC have been reviewing online programs, which require a $700 fee, staff review and approval by TABC legal. Programs are required to be tied to a TABC Certified Instructor.

Continue reading
  43 Hits
  0 Comments
43 Hits
0 Comments

Is there an ABC citation in your future for that cute can of cabernet?

blog

Is there an ABC citation in your future for that cute can of cabernet?

Apr 9, 2019

Single-serve cans of champagne and wine are popping up everywhere. We see them being served at trendy restaurants, bars, hotels, nightclubs and even movie theatres.

They’re so cute – but also a tad trashy. Sipping bubbly with a straw out of a can kinda reminds us of swilling tallboys of PBR. But we digress …

State law prohibits serving a bottle of wine unless it is opened and poured in a glass. This includes champagne.

Think about how wine by the bottle is served at a fancy restaurant. Your hand-picked selection is carefully displayed by the sommelier. With a practiced pull on the cork, vintage vino is splashed in your glass for a sniff and a sample. After teasing your pallet with a sip, the sommelier pours a full glass of wine and leaves the opened bottle on the table.

The same concept applies to single-serve cans and bottles of wine. State law requires that at least some of the wine be poured into a glass before the container is delivered to the customer.  It is illegal to serve a customer with a full bottle or can of wine.

We find ourselves singing Beck’s infectious “Where It’s At”:

Pulling out jives and jamboree handouts

Two turntables and a microphone

Bottles and cans and just clap your hands

Just clap your hands

If you want to avoid an ABC citation, pour those cute little cans into a cup before you hand them to your customer.

Continue reading
  46 Hits
  0 Comments
46 Hits
0 Comments

Comment on Tennessee Residency Law for Liquor Stores in Beer Marketer’s Insights

Our partner, R.J. O’Hara, felt compelled to comment during the recent NABCA Legal Symposium, in response to a panel discussion on the pending Supreme Court decision in the Tennessee Retail Association case and, much to his surprise and delight, Eric Sheppard at Beer Marketer’s Insights picked up on it and mentioned R.J.’s comment in his […]

The post Comment on Tennessee Residency Law for Liquor Stores in Beer Marketer’s Insights appeared first on Flaherty & O'Hara.

Continue reading
  960 Hits
  0 Comments
960 Hits
0 Comments

Second-in-command selected for Tennessee ABC

Will Cheek - Waller Law Will Check - Waller Law

Tabitha Blackwell was named Assistant Director by the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission at its regular meeting on March 28.

She was interviewed and hired on the spot. According to recently minted ABC Director Russel F. Thomas, she was among 50 candidates for the position.

Blackwell is an attorney and most recently served as Assistant Director of the Division of Charitable Solicitations and Gaming at the Tennessee Secretary of State. Blackwell is a double alum of the University of Memphis, earning a B.A. in 2004 and a J.D. in 2007.

According to the job posting, “The Assistant Director is responsible for reviewing applications and permits issued by the agency,” as well as violation hearings and server training. We have personal experience with Ms. Blackwell’s professional prowess as a regulator at charitable solicitations and welcome her to the ABC.

For no particular reason, we find ourselves humming Jean Shepard’s Grand Ole Opry Classic:

I'm tired of playin' second fiddle to an old guitar

Subscribe Now!

Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage chairman Bryan Kaegi resigns

Tennessee ABC puts the smack down on Jell-O shots

Dead again: Court strikes down Tennessee residency requirement for liquor store owners

Can I bring my own wine into a restaurant in Tennessee?

Gov. Haslam taps newest ABC Commissioner

Continue reading
  1018 Hits
  0 Comments
1018 Hits
0 Comments