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How Can You Abolish Alcohol, Yet Profit From Its Sale?

Beverage News
11.08.2008

Welcome to Alabama

According to “The Arab Tribune” of Arab, Alabama, “A Montgomery County Circuit Court has ruled that Marshall, Cullman, Blount, Dekalb and Lauderdale counties are entitled to a share of $1.3 million in back taxes generated by a statewide beer tax since 2004.” This means $150,000 for the dry counties (counties that do not sell alcohol), the same as the wet counties (counties that do sell alcohol).

Apparently there are “Community Development Districts” (CDD) within the counties that do serve alcohol, so I guess these counties aren’t really dry. Strangely enough, a “private residential development that contains at least 100 home sites on a t least 250 acres of land and a social club and a golf course, and that meets certain other criteria, can elect to become a CDD and legally sell alcoholic beverages for on-site consumption, even though the development is located in a dry county.”

So basically if you are super rich and live in a country club, you can party, but no one else in the county can. We all know that the un-super rich probably just drive an hour to a wet county, fill their Chevy pickup up with Pabst and Wild Turkey, and drive back, rendering the laws useless, but then these laws are rooted in righteousness rather than practicality.

I lived in a dry county once. It was called “Pierce County, Washington before I was 21”, and I call tell you that it was terrible. My friends and I used to drive up to Vancouver, Canada when we were 18 to enjoy fine wine and women, and it was great.

I wish alcohol was more than a red-tape bargaining chip for government. It is pretty crazy that in this day and age people still ride the old horse of righteousness when it comes to alcohol.

Beverly Hills Hotel

Consider the Beverly Hills Hotel where I used to be Sommelier. The place is a giant contradiction. It is owned by the Sultan of Brunei, who is Muslim and as such doesn’t believe in the consumption of alcohol, yet enjoys the profits from the sale of alcohol at the Beverly Hills Hotel. To give you the full picture, according to Wikipedia, the Sultan also has two wives and derives his fortune from having total control of his economy’s finances and oil wealth. He used his wealth to acquire a massive auto collection and Boeing 747 with gold plated furniture, and best of all, in 2006 he changed the Brunei constitution to make himself invincible to the law.

The Sultan of Brunei's 747

The Sultan of Brunei's Bugatti Veyron

It is hard enough to start a winery, let alone navigate the BS red-tape you have to deal with to actually sell your goods. I know of one family winery that is drinking their 2008 production due to paperwork problems…awesome.



Comments

  1. Lacey | Saturday, November 8, 2008

    I’ve been to the Beverly Hills Hotel, and they are making way too much money on alcohol, the service was terrible!


  2. Alan Kropf | Saturday, November 8, 2008

    Ya, service issues aren’t really a concern for them, which is a big reason why I left…The good news is that there are a lot of awesome places in Los Angeles for you to go and get good wine AND good service without getting overcharged…


  3. Ryan | Saturday, November 8, 2008

    That place is terrible, you only get good service if you are someone “important”, what a joke. I have to go there for meetings, which is the only way the place stays in business


  4. Alan Kropf | Saturday, November 8, 2008

    Haha, ok, but what about the question I have posed in this blog, that is, is it ok to condemn alcohol but then profit from it?



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