22 August 2011

my beer is sweating.

I'm surprised and excited so many have taken interest or, should I say, debate over my recent adventure. This is how progression forward starts! Well, I'm a firm believer in getting all the facts straight before getting my undies in a bundle and taking a firm stance on something, so maybe I should share the exact words of the city ordinance and Minnesota state liquor licensing laws to help spread awareness of correct and true facts, so you can better understand what I'm going to be asking the city council.

Page 5 of the Introduction to Minnesota Liquor Laws and Rules:

    I. Wine On Sale licenses (340 A.404 Subd. 5.) and on sale of strong beer.
            2. A municipality may by ordinance authorize a holder of an on-sale wine license, who is also licensed to sell 3.2 beer on-sale and whose gross receipts are at least 60% attributable to the sale of food, to sell strong beer at on-sale without an additional license- no additional fee may be charged.

Now here is the definition of beer and wine (by ordinance of Windom) .

    Beer:  "Malt liquor containing not less than one-half of one percent alcohol by volume nor more than 3.2 percent alcohol by weight." 

    Wine: "Wine means the product made from the normal alcoholic fermentation of grapes, including still wine, sparkling and carbonated wine, wine made from condensed grape must, wine made from other agricultural products than sound, ripe grapes, imitation wine, compounds sold as wine, vermouth, cider, perry and sake.  For purposes of on sale wine licenses, 'wine' may contain up to 14 percent alcohol by volume for consumption with the sale of food.  For all other purposes, 'wine' is a product containing not less than one-half of one percent nor more than 24 percent alcohol by volume for nonindustrial use."

Now one must take into consideration that River City Eatery will not be a bar, River City Eatery is an establishment dedicated to the sale of food and where there is food, there shall always be drink.  This is not about selling intoxicating beverages- 3.2 beer, strong beer and/or wine will get anyone to that destination if he or she chooses that destination.  It is the choice, not the beverage, that intoxicates.

The purpose of "redefining" the municipal ordinance is to give my customers who wish to enjoy a wonderful evening in beautiful, historic downtown Windom a choice to enjoy some wonderful local products with some wonderful local food and to support local, small businesses--and in this case those small businesses are breweries.  I think of micro brews just like some think of wines, some kinds of beer just go better with some kinds of food.  I can sell those "some kinds of wines," but I can't sell those "some kinds of beers."  It just doesn't make complete sense to me.

It is important to point out that River City Eatery will still be a great place to eat regardless of my success redefining the municipal ordinance because, bottom line, we are an eatery, not a drinkery.  I have no ulterior motives with this adventure, I'm having a hard time figuring out what any ulterior motives would be in this case. I just think it would enhance the overall experience of River City Eatery and Windom all together, and I think many people, residents and/or guests, would conquer.

I'm not trying to move mountains or try something that has never been done before, this is nothing crazy or ridiculous to the world around us. I'm simply asking permission to sell a product that a great number of people have to presently leave the city limits to enjoy with a nice meal.  Why not allow them to enjoy it right here in Windom at River City Eatery? 



  1. Because the people may not want to loosen up the liqour laws in this town.

  2. The previous poster is perhaps right that "the people" may not want to loosen up the liquor laws. Perhaps. Or perhaps not. It is only by bringing this issue up to representatives of the people--in this case the city council--that we will actually know this; if no one questions the law in front of the city council, how would could one know whether or not it is the will of the people in Windom?
    I have absolutely no dog in this fight, but I do think it is ludicrous to criticize someone who simply seeks to pursue what she thinks is best for her fledgling business, and do so legally and within the spirit of American democracy.

  3. So anyone who may disagree with someone else's desired outcome is ludicrous and against the spirit of American democracy. I get it now, OK. We'll be quiet now.

  4. You might want to work on your reading comprehension, because that is not what I wrote at all. I clearly stated that it is ludicrous to criticize this person's desire to pursue a change in the present laws. I also submit that, yes, allowing someone to seek change in a legal way is fully within the spirit of American Democracy. Would you disagree?
    Putting words into my mouth, such as implying that I stated that verbal disagreement is anathema to American Democracy, is simply diverting the focus; this tactic is what one usually resorts to when they realize that they have no other recourse.
    Also, whether or not you or anyone else agrees with "the outcome" is immaterial and unimportant to this discussion.