Raise a Glass to Repeal Day

On the 16th day of January 1919 the loudest and squeakiest wheel of all squeaky wheels of the day, the Temperance Union, achieved their ultimate desire with the passing of the Eighteenth Amendment. The Eighteenth Amendment prohibited the production, transport, and sale of intoxicating liquors in the United States. The proponents of the law believed that all of society’s ills would be magically washed...

Navigating the Corkage Fee Conundrum

The subject of corkage fees in restaurants has been a topic of great debate, for both restaurateurs and patrons alike, for many, many years. In fact the circumstance of navigating the corkage topic has been the source of some of my most uncomfortable moments – from both sides of the negotiating table. In truth, I rarely bring wine to a restaurant other than those...

Where has Hospitality Gone?

Where has hospitality gone? When I started out working in the front of the house customer service was job one. I miss those days. Nowhere has hospitality taken such a steep decline than behind the bar. The bartender was the beating heart of the bar and restaurant. They most often earned their spot behind the bar for their ability to handle pressure with a...

Shifting Beer Styles

The fact is that beer, beer styles, and how beer is being consumed and discussed has changed. The craft beer movement 2.0 (I consider the first movement to have occurred in the 1980s) has brought a lot of good things to those of us who crave quality beverages. On the other side of the coin there has been a growing movement rooted in the...

Transparency in Scotch Whisky

In recent days Compass Box (a brand of unique blended Scotch Whiskies) has launched their Scotch Whisky Transparency Campaign (SWTC). It’s a complicated issue to be sure but at the heart of it all is the fact that EU regulations prohibit Whisky makers from revealing the components of their blends most notably the age of the spirits utilized in the blend. The current laws...

Why Do Cocktails So Often Suck?

Lately I have had a burning question on my mind. Maybe you have had the same question, which is, why do so many cocktails still suck? For some time I wondered if many bars and restaurants were simply unaware of the incredible cocktail renaissance that has taken place for the past decade plus. But this is clearly not the case as many places serving...

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