Can Montgomery County’s Liquor Control System Be Saved?

For the past year, the Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control’s dispensary system, which requires every keg, can, or bottle of alcohol sold within the county to be purchased from the County itself — either directly or indirectly — has been under fire.  The State Comptroller, Peter Franchot, a county native and the state’s chief […]

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Liquor License Provisions in “Fast Casual” Restaurant Leases

The Washington Post has an article today on the proliferation of Chipotle-inspired “fast casual” restaurants that allow customers to customize their meals with a variety of fresh ingredients. The article notes that, while more traditional fast food establishments (think McDonalds or Wendy’s or Taco) are struggling to find new opportunities for growth, fast casual restaurants are booming. […]

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New Maryland Laws Loosen Distribution Rules for Craft Beer and Small Breweries

Several new laws were passed in the recent Maryland legislative session that affect how small brewers may sell their products to consumers in the state.  Generally speaking, sales of alcoholic beverages in the United States are funneled through a “three tier” system:  producers (i.e. brewers, winemakers, and distillers) sell to wholesalers; wholesalers sell to retailers; […]

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Legislation Moving Forward to Remove Liquor License Residency Requirements

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post here about the possibility that counties in Maryland may consider removing the requirement that liquor licenses be held by at least one resident of the county that issues it.  Shortly thereafter, the blog BethesdaNow picked up on the story and interviewed me about whether that might be […]

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TTB Backlog for Breweries Highlights Need to Get Applications Done Right the First Time

The federal Alcohol Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau (TTB) announced earlier this month that, as of the end of 2013, there were over 3700 active brewer’s notices on file with the TTB.  A federal brewer’s notice is required to operate a brewery and sell beer in interstate commerce.  That number represents a 12% increase over […]

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County Liquor Board Wants to Nix Residency Requirements for Liquor Licenses

The Baltimore Sun had an interesting story last week about how the liquor board of Harford County, Maryland, wants to eliminate the state requirement that every county liquor license application have on it at least one resident of the county.  As stated in the article, it can often be a challenge for a restaurant to […]

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