- They want to get rid of the stupid requirements that beer under 4% alcohol by volume be labeled as "beer" and over 4% as "ale." This results in the idiotic situation of lagers being labeled as "ale" or "malt liquor." Those are brewing style terminologies, not ABV. I once had a publicity guy give me an embarrassed apology as he handed me a review bottle of a dopplebock that was labeled "ale" because TABC required it. (A bock, of course, is a lager, not an ale.)
- They want Texas brewers to be able to list ABV on bottles, like out-of-state beers do. I would guess the rationale for banning that info on bottles is that the state doesn't want people seeking out strong beer to get wasted. I would argue that it's necessary to prevent people from getting wasted. If I'm drinking a strong beer, I need to know that. I've accidentally gotten plowed on beers that were stronger than I thought, and it's not fun. I guess I should have thanked TABC in between pukes those nights. I'd even go further than the suit and suggest that brewers and bars be required to list ABV.
- And most important of all, they want to do away with laws prohibiting production breweries from selling on-premises and brewpubs from selling off-premises. These are unreasonable restraints of commerce. Back in the spring I thoroughly documented failed attempts to legislate such change, so I guess it will have to be done in the courts.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Jester King Sues TABC Over Freedom of Speech
Jester King Brewery has announced a lawsuit against the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission on grounds that the state has violated its free speech and equal protection rights. I don't know if it will succeed, but it's certainly justified. The parts I like best: