This is what every liquor license would look like if beer snobs ran the world.
The Garden Gourmet, a grocery store in Chicago’s East Village, may be granted a liquor license that allows them to sell only craft beer and higher-end wine. No booze, no malt liquor, no fortified wines, no Budweiser. In other words, it’ll look like my garage, minus the wine.
The measure is designed to address concerns in this mostly dry neighborhood that allowing beer, wine and liquor sales would create alcohol-fueled shenanigans. Members of the East Village Association voted 22-5 in favor of granting Garden Gourmet the restricted license, which should make the young urban professionals (you know, Yuppies) who shop at the store happy that they can get their Goose Island where they buy their Camembert cheese and their organic Belgian leeks.
Or can they?
You see, “craft beers” as defined in the liquor license are based on the Brewers Association’s standards. Now that Goose Island is owned by megacorp AB-InBev, they no longer qualify as a craft brewer. It’ll be interesting to see if the measure is upheld to the letter of the law, or if they’ll let this hometown brewery slip onto the shelves regardless of who owns them.
It will also be interesting to see if they can sell bombers, as the license stipulates that only “single servings” of beer can be sold. For most of us, a bomber is a single serving, or at least a reasonable amount of beer to enjoy while watching Justified and The Americans back-to-back on the DVR.
The license awaits approval by Greg Steadman, Chicago’s liquor control commissioner.
No word yet on if every stadium, airport and hotel bar in America will follow suit, but I kinda wish they would.