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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

City of Portland: No Big Beers Downtown

In the annals of poorly-considered public policies, this one should should at least get special mention: the city of Portland wants to eliminate the sales of high-alcohol beer (which in this case means anything north of 5.75%) in the downtown core:
The change would limit what beer customers could buy in convenience stores and would prohibit stores from selling single containers of malt liquor or domestic beer of more than 22 ounces.

It would also prohibit the sale of malt liquor or domestic beer with more than 5.75 percent alcohol, box wine, and multiple alcoholic beverages larger than 12 ounces....

The higher-end microbrews would be eliminated because of their alcohol content.
Hey, it's not like this is Beervana or anything. Oh, wait...

14 comments:

DA Beers said...

Maybe this will finally get the conversation started on classification of malt beverages, we need a legal separation between Craft Beer and Macro Swill. Seems Wine never gets effected, so we need this same separation with Craft Beer.

This classification should also end the annual tax increases to slow down underage drinking and fund rehab clinics, neither of which are a function of craft beer.

Bill said...

There's open drug-dealing in broad daylight throughout that part of town. So let's punish the legal businesses and see if that tidies up the street people.

Robert said...

Big deal. There's no outlets to buy that kind of beer downtown anyway. I wonder how it would affect the beer fests, though.

Jeff Alworth said...

Yes, because the homeless are spending their hard-gained ten-spots on bottles of the Abyss.

Keith said...

Hey you could still apparently get imported beer at a higher strength. Belgians, anyone?

The Brooklynite said...

Looking at the map, I believe the Whole Foods Pearl District store would not be allowed to sell many of the craft beers. That is going to get somebody's attention and makes me believe this will never fly.

dr wort said...

Nanny State politics. Bill and DA make excellent points. Ignore the BIG problems, but set forth on the redundant ones. Nice job.

Can I stop paying state taxes? Obviously, they don't know how to put the money to good use. ;-}

At least the PABST crowd won't be affected! Growlers of PABST all around!

Ben said...

My beer purchasing is predominantly outside of this targeted area, but if I was in this designated spot and would lose all immediate access to bombers of 6%-and-over beer, then yes - I'd be a tad bit torqued.

robotadam said...

I live downtown, so this would kill me. Whole Foods would definitely be crippled, but even the Plaid Pantries and Safeways have a selection of >5% beer in 22s and 6-packs. And what, Bridgeport, Deschutes, and Rogue won't be able to sell bottles at their pubs?

Jeff Alworth said...

There is word on the Brew Crew listserve that other outlets are reporting something a little different. Apparently, it might only affect beers in excess of 5.75% sold in bottles larger than 22 ounces. That would exempt all but the odd 750 ml bottles.

Also, on the point of Whole Foods, apparently this would only apply to convenience stores, but to my mind that makes it worse: I hate the idea of treating businesses in separate categories like that.

Kevin said...

This is already happening in the Whiteaker area of Eugene, we are in the middle of a 90 "trial" ban.

Alteast they had the foresight here to limit the ban to malt liquor beverages. But, I could see the list growing if the ban isn't effective and they decide to answer is to expand it.

I'm not too worried about it though. Whiteaker happens to be the home of Ninkasi and the whole city is in love with the brewery. I don't see them expanding a ban right as Ninkasi is building a taproom/tasting area.

Cheers!

Kevin
beerandcoding.com

DA Beers said...

how the hell am I supposed to play Edward 40-Hands now? Damn you OLCC!

Anonymous said...

Given the impact of the brewery industry on public finance, the law of unintended consequences may rear it's ugly head. A truly stupid idea.

Anonymous said...

This rule would impact grocery and convenience in the designated areas. 6 pack crafts would be exempted but 22's selling for less than $4.84 per bottle would not, regardless of alcohol content or brewer. There is also a provision that bans all 16 oz cans regardless of alcohol content or package size (6 pk, 12 pk, etc). Also no single 12 oz btls would be allowed, regardless of content or brewer. Rule still ib hearings through 3/4, so it will likely change a bit.

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