Booze, braids and more: Odd state laws take effect

Virginia hunters can now choose to wear pink in the woods. Indiana residents will no longer be able to avoid positive drug tests by purchasing fake urine. And South Carolina distillers can now legally mix their spirits in their tasting rooms.

Those laws are among the hundreds that went into effect over the weekend as most states begin their new fiscal years. While most states ratified billion-dollar budgets and tackled complex issues like health care and the opioid epidemic, legislators also found time to address more mundane issues.

In Virginia, legislators gave hunters some new fashion choices. Those who spend their weekends tramping through the woods can now opt to wear fluorescent pink clothes, along with blaze orange.

Booze, braids and more: Odd state laws take effect - ServingAlcohol.com© Provided by The Hill Booze, braids and more: Odd state laws take effect.   After the hunt, Virginia residents could choose to imbibe some stronger spirits. One new law allows state-run liquor stores to sell 151-proof spirits. Another law allows beer to be delivered to parked vehicles, for the tippler on the go.

In South Carolina, distillers may now sell their customers up to three 750-milliliter bottles of hooch. Previously, distillers could only sell one bottle per customer.

Those who want to consume spirits at distilleries in Charleston or Columbia or Spartanburg may now mix their drinks in those tasting rooms.

Tennessee residents may be free of the hassle of too many automated sales calls. A new state law will charge telemarketers with a class A misdemeanor if they spoof caller identification technology to appear as if the calls are coming from a government office or a bank.

South Dakotans will be able to get their hair braided without the onerous process of obtaining a state license. The law was inspired by Rachael Gorsuch, a woman hit with a fine after she braided hair in her own home without a license.

Indiana legislators who still want kids to learn cursive handwriting in schools will poll teachers on whether script is still necessary to teach.

Another Hoosier State law bans the sale of synthetic urine. Synthetic urine, used to avoid positive drug tests, had been available for sale at some stores.

“It’s pH balanced, it has all the trace minerals and nutrients that are found in urine and it is very, very difficult to detect,” Indiana State Rep. Greg Beumer (R-Modoc) said during a legislative hearing.

Will self-serve beer render bartenders obsolete?

The technology can measure and charge literally by the sip.

Your next draft might be pulled not by a bartender — but by you.

A small but growing number of gastropubs and fast-casual restaurants are going self-serve, installing systems that enable drinkers to draw their own taps, similar to the soda fountain at McDonald’s but far more sophisticated.

Establishments in the notoriously low-margin restaurant industry say the technology not only cuts labor costs but also boosts revenue by encouraging customers to sample what can be a bewildering array of Belgian quads, India pale ales or oatmeal stouts on a menu.ServingAlcohol.com self serve beer

 The technology has another attraction: It can measure and charge literally by the sip — something not lost on Barrel Republic, a craft beer bar in Oceanside, Calif., and San Diego’s Pacific Beach where there are dozens of craft beers on tap and no bartender.

Sean Hale, general manager of the recently opened Oceanside pub, said customers pay for what would be free samples at traditional pubs while making it simpler to try exotic brews.

“They love it,” he said. “It’s about tasting all these different beers and the fun of exploring.”

Fast-casual sausage joint Dog Haus is on board too. The chain has a four-tap self-serve system at its Santa Ana store, and a six-tap one is coming soon to a location near California State, Fullerton.

Quasim Riaz, the chain’s co-founder, said that with customers charged by the 10th of an ounce, there is less waste. Customers tend to be more careful than a bartender who might be prone to spill, over-pour or give away a beer “on the house,” he said.

“In theory, you get a 100 percent yield on a keg,” he said.

Both establishments installed systems from iPourIt, a Santa Ana company that is one of the leading providers of the technology.

“Our goal is to really redefine the concept of craft beer dispense,” said company co-founder Joseph McCarthy.

Its system, like others, requires drinkers to provide an ID to receive a wireless bracelet or card that enables them to operate the tap. Providers sell table- and wall-mounted systems, along with mobile units for fairs and sporting events.

But some labor is required to ensure that establishments are not selling beer to inebriated customers, which can pose a legal liability. After a customer drinks a certain amount — usually two full beers — an employee has to determine whether they are sober enough for more.

The technology runs about $25,000 for a wall-mounted, 20-tap system, plus a monthly maintenance fee. But if they prove profitable, the systems could become ubiquitous across an industry in which online ordering and reservations already are popular, said Brandon Gerson of restaurant data firm CHD Expert.

“A system like this didn’t even exist 10 years ago,” he said. “I don’t see why they wouldn’t have the potential to become just as standard as a booth.”

It’s unclear how many self-serve beer locations there are nationwide, but McCarthy said iPourIt is in 42 locations in 23 states and two Canadian provinces. Fourteen of those are exclusively self-serve with no bartender.

Josh Goodman, of rival PourMyBeer in Wheeling, Ill., which previously sold and installed iPourIt taps, said his company has sold its own self-pour systems to about 80 locations since 2013.

“In a location with 50 taps, you typically have to have around 20 to 30 employees,” Goodman said. “With us, you can easily have 10 and not really be stretched.”

 But the traditional bartender isn’t about to go the way of the elevator operator, not just yet anyway. Indeed, self-pour could prove to have limited appeal.

Nick Petrillo, a research analyst at IBISWorld, said the concept may seem cool, but in practice might complicate the experience for some customers. For example, drinkers might make bad pours, or spill more often than a trained bartender, leaving the tap areas sticky and unsanitary.

“This technology seems like a total buzz kill,” Petrillo said.

Chris Bright, president of Zpizza International, said that has not been his experience.

The franchise pizza chain recently opened a “Tap Room” location with iPourIt technology near Los Angeles International Airport and wants to sign leases for 20 new self-pour beer locations in Southern California by early next year.

Bright said the chain is eating the cost of bad pours, but the systems are still moneymakers because Zpizza can serve a lengthy beer menu, while not hiring an army of servers. And customers, he said, are more likely to order another beer if they don’t have to stand in line again and pay at the register.

Customers like Chris Scales, who on a recent afternoon sipped a pale ale he poured at the location near airport, seem to bear that out.

“I don’t like interacting with bartenders,” he said. “They are always too busy.”

Why We Need Bartenders And Servers To Care

What is an employee understanding of the “Duty of care?”  The duty of care is to “CARE”.  Bartenders and waitstaff must know the amount of alcohol in the drinks to serve alcohol safely.  It is so much riskier when patrons control their own drinking opportunity (self-serve).

When your staff receives patrons money increase the legal responsibility of the sale.  The staff must develop the ability to understand the needs of the patrons while controlling what they want.  The caring for the patron creates the opportunity for your staff to develop patron trust and safety. Your staff actions are always made in good faith by accepting the responsibility to care. “HAP” is the staff ability to help, assist, and protect patrons with preventative checks.

The trained SCAB  ability by your staff of patrons is used in fulfilling a legal duty to care. The managers and staff must all learn and develop preventative observation and intervention skills. The younger staff can learn from older experienced staff on how to interact in problem situations. Staff interactions prevent the opportunity of patron’s risk taking. Your staff attentive intervention skills create safer social environments. The use of house policies by all staff educates patrons to develop self-care. The patron immediate communication of observed risky behaviors stops patron problems from occurring. The employee’s ability to listen and use intervention skills prevents unwanted patron risk taking.  Patrons learn to trust bartenders acts and delivers care for all patrons.  The staff always reminds patrons to plan ahead for the safe transportation before the drinking of alcohol starts.  The patron’s preventative planning reduces hidden dangers.  The safety skills used by your staff are continual and ongoing with patron interventions, observations, and experiences.

The manager will operate in a manner of care as do other responsible hospitality managers.  Managers are always educating themselves, staff, and patrons about premises safety. The management will provide employees with a list of local house policy to be enforced by their observations. House policies can be posted and explained to patrons which agreed to them as conditions of entry. House policy can be stricter then state laws and city ordinances. Employees will state to educate patrons, ‘It is our house policy and a condition of entry.” The trained ability of servers to deal with unwanted possible problems reduces loss opportunity. Opportunity for problems the only thing that employees can try to control. Danger from alcohol use can always create sudden and unexpected patron acts. The education of patron’s instant communication with staff can create safer environments. When dealing with active drinkers remember that you may have to repeat everything!!!! Some patrons may become confused because they cannot understand what your house policy is for acceptable conduct.

People who are drinking alcohol can get confused because of the effect of “many poly impairments and alcohol.” Bartenders may fulfill their responsible of a duty of care, threw continual and ongoing checking the customer’s state of well-being by SCAB. The employee’s responsible observation and control of patron’s alcohol consumption is done by SCAB.  SCAB is the staff checking of patrons for changes in speech, coordination, appearance, and behavior.  Patrons that become possibly impaired will tend to show traits of unwanted customer behavior and misjudgment. Many patrons pregame and have a higher tolerance for alcohol are continually and ongoing revisited by staff “SCAB” during their time of service.  Some patrons never seem to show signs of possible intoxication or obviously impaired behaviors because of their tolerance.  Some patrons may possibly become a danger to themselves and society. Remember that people drinking alcohol will become confused.  Patrons may not be aware of the personnel changes that are occurring around them and possible dangers.  Safe drinking habits should be taught by bartenders and staff to keep patrons and society safer. Remember training experience drinkers to make safer drinking decisions helps servers make safe money and more returning patrons.

Responsible alcohol drinking is educated by staff when developing more controlled patron consumption rates, especially when patrons behavior include eating food and drinking water, planning ahead to have safe transportation home, and drinking with friends when happy and not sad.  Servers are professional adult caregivers with a legal duty to assist patrons. Remember ‘two people got to go” when assisting possibly impaired patrons. Staff controlling of aggressive drinking at special the event are done by assigning a person to act a social lifeguard in the group. The lifeguard will help to control group behavior and patron drinking. The lifeguard will intervene when needed and arrange for their safe transportation if needed. The effects of alcohol on experienced patron’s behavior are hard to diagnose because of higher patron tolerances. Heavy alcohol drinking does not create smarter behaviors. Ten percent of the populous consumes 70 percent of the alcohol produced. Alcohol can affect the patron’s learning, memory, decision-making and social behaviors. Long-term alcohol abuse also causes possible changes in understanding, judgment, emotion, anxiety, and social reasoning.” Low levels of alcohol may improve blood flow to the brain, (making you think you are smarter) but that effect quickly does not last. “At some levels, there is a change where alcohol is aggressively put into your body can create greater dangers. While the effects of alcohol consumption differ with certain groups of drinkers. The majority of alcohol is consumed by ten percent of the populous. Responsible drinking can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, depression, and help maintain cognitive function. Heavy drinking consumption can create the opportunity for dangerous effects on the brain which can affect thinking and reasoning.

Staff must repeat house policy often to patrons. Staff must be caring and observant of the needs of the customers. Problem drinkers come back to the caring servers and bartenders that they trust. Caring is a special duty. Serving patrons needs and caring can be a joy to your staff, “Be aware and always care”. The staff great experience of having returning patrons “that come back to revisit”, comes from their trust they have created. Staff must take the time to care for patrons needs, control their wants.

Be safe,

Robert Pomplun
www.ServingAlcohol.com


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China Is Building a Disney World for Wine

Changyu, China’s winemaking powerhouse, is building French-style chateaus and Italianate castles around the country—and an entire “Wine City”—to encourage the country’s passion for the grape.

At Chateau Changyu Reina, honey-colored brick towers enclose wide cobbled courtyards, and vast, wood-beamed halls look as if they are prepared to host an imminent medieval banquet. At first glance, the Italianate castle and winery could have been built hundreds of years ago, in Italy’s Tuscan hills.

Spoiler: It wasn’t.

The chateau is but one part of an ambitious 600 million yuan ($86.9 million) complex completed four years ago just outside the city of Xi’an, in Shaanxi province in central China. It is a prodigious winemaking operation powered by more than 2,000 acres of vines. Currently, it’s annually churning out 5,000 bottles, mostly merlot—and the goal is to drastically scale up. The cellars at Chateau Changyu Reina have room for as many as 150,000 oak barrels.

An interactive exhibit at Chateau Reina, which teaches visitors about the global history of wine.

Courtesy Illva Saronno

The faux-historic halls of the castle are also home to an interactive exhibition that walks visitors through the history and making of wine. Mirrors encourage visitors to stick out their tongues to examine their taste buds; there’s a statue of Bacchus, plus a wall that showcases the various strata of soil, or terroir. Inexplicably, a giant, smiling face resembling a cartoon grape beams out from one corner. An oversized globe spotlights the world’s other wine regions, while a table covered in Perspex tubes and buttons asks users to see if they can match a region to a scent. There’s even a room dedicated to former Chinese leaders (none of whom seem to be enjoying a glass of wine).

A Country Enchanted by Wine

This mock castle isn’t unique. It’s one of a network of so-called chateaux built across the country, from Ningxia province to Beijing, by China’s oldest winemaker, Changyu.  These grand castles, each inspired by a different European winemaking country, are a concrete sign of the company’s ambitious plans for Middle Kingdom wine.  According to the International Organisation of Vine and Wine, China is the second-largest wine grower by vineyard area, behind only France, with land under vine roughly the size of Puerto Rico.

Chateau Baron Balboa, a winery owned by Changyu near Shihezi City in China’s Xinjiang Province.

Courtesy Illva Saronno

The challenge Chinese winemakers face, though, isn’t quantity. It’s improving the quality of whatever juice those lands can produce, and that’s where Changyu has tapped an experienced, new partner for help. 77-year old Augusto Reina isn’t just the namesake of that Shaanxi chateau; he’s also the head of Illva Saronno Holding Spa, the Italian winemaker best-known worldwide as the producer of Disaronno liqueur. Reina has imported his know-how to help China’s nascent industry produce vintages that even the sniffiest wine snob might deign to sample. In return, Changyu named a castle after him and even crafted a life-size bronze of the Italian sitting on a bench in the vineyard—raising a glass. 

Is the Quality There?

Augusto Reina.
Illva Saronno

Sitting in a hotel near that castle (and sculpture), Reina anticipates what you’re thinking. “When we came to China seven or eight years ago, I had a stomach ache, I must confess it, from the quality of the wine. It was not so good,” he explains, via a translator. Yet the entrepreneur saw potential in both the product and the market; by 2013, China had become the world’s biggest consumer of red wine and has continued to grow. For more than two and a half years, Reina negotiated with Changyu. “They were very demanding, challenging negotiations. I don’t think this kind of thing would be possible for an American or a French company, because they have such a different business culture,” he continues, diplomatically.

Eventually, Reina brokered a deal that included Illva taking a significant equity stake in Changyu. The pact also initiated an in-depth cultural exchange, sending Illva’s winemakers to various Changyu sites to help school their new colleagues, as well as bringing Chinese staffers to Italy on a tasting tour. The Italians helped Changyu select the grapes to grow and offered advice on how to tend to its existing vines. They pitched in with expertise in selecting machinery for production, too, such as bottling lines.

Chateau Reina, in Xi’an.

Courtesy Illva Saronno

One conundrum that even the Italians can’t crack, though, is the dominance of red wine. Redolent of such renowned regions as Burgundy and Bordeaux, red wine shares a color with both the Communist Party and good luck. Unfortunately for lovers of Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, white is the color of mourning and is mostly worn at funerals, which stigmatizes blanc plonk long before it’s opened.

Chateau Changyu-Castel in Yantai.

Courtesy Illva Saronno

Coastal Wines

Nowhere is that partnership more evident than at a second Changyu site, in the resort city of Yantai on China’s northeastern coast, just across the Yellow Sea from North Korea. This is the location of the company’s most aggressive and surreal project so far: Wine City. Set on more than 1,000 acres and costing an estimated 6 billion yuan ($870 million), it is aptly named, a sprawling hybrid of production facility, tourist attraction, and trippy fantasia. The inevitable rows and rows of vines pale next to the manmade structures that dot the landscape. There’s already one chateau, a white neo-Gothic structure that looks like the set of Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and two others are nearing completion. Another Gothic-inspired pile, complete with an artificial moat, will be dedicated to championing and producing red wine, while the squat and sturdy Romanesque chateau next door—imagine the home of any Disney princess—is a temple to brandy making, a first for the company.

Chateau Changyu Moser XV in Ningxia, China.

Courtesy Illva Saronno

A swirling skyscraper is under construction on a nearby hill, too: Six abstracted champagne flutes decorate the façade of this Wine Research Institute. (Bordeaux’s new Cité du Vin seems a flimsy rival in comparison.) It will house scientists working on perfecting those vintages, as well as tasting rooms and bars offering views of the countryside, at least on days when pollution from Beijing doesn’t descend in a thick, white smog. Such fumes don’t have much immediate effect on vines, compared with toxins in water or soil, so China’s notoriously noxious air have not yet impacted its wine output.

State-of-the-Art Technology

Most impressive of all are the winemaking facilities themselves, less caves than a series of cathedrals, or gleaming airplane hangars, jigsawed together with articulated roofs that look like giant caterpillars. A shy guide leading a tour round the humming, spotless facilities says this is the world’s largest wine production site. It’s a plausible claim. With 95 tanks here already for a storage capacity exceeding 40,000 tons, more are planned; when Wine City hits peak production capacity, it will churn out 450,000 tons of wine and brandy per year, she said. (Compare that with Château Petrus, which might produce around 30,000 bottles, or just under 200 tons, over the same period)

 

The glass clinks noisily as it trundles around 10 snaking automatic bottling lines, and the cleaning system automatically sterilizes 120 cold stabilization tanks, which help forestall the broken glass-like crystals that form in chilled, bottled wine if it’s not properly handled. While the Changyu brand is emblazoned on almost everything, occasionally other names peek through—Italy’s Tecninox and ERsistemi, for example, collaborated on that cold stabilization room; almost every piece of major tech in the plant is Italian-designed, thanks to Reina’s investment and influence. “All the technologies here are exactly like the ones we have, but since our plant was built two years before them, this is even more modern,” he says, proudly.

Tourism, Too?

Can Changyu’s deep-pocketed attempts under Reina’s tutelage really create a new winemaking hotspot? “It’s definitely one of the recognizable big brands, along with Great Wall and Dynasty. Thus, it has instant brand recognition for many Chinese consumers, ”explains Edward Ragg, of (Dragon Phoenix Wine Consulting) in Beijing by email. He is cautious about the Italians’ impact on what goes into the bottle. Euromonitor International Ltd. analyst Spiros Malandrakis is more bullish, drawing parallels with the surging British sparkling wine industry, which has been buoyed by climate change and a few canny blind tastings in which it beat Champagne. “Considering the amount of money being in, and the people involved, we will soon be seeing not just award-winning sparkling wine from England, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see super-premium red wines from China, too,” he tells Bloomberg.


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TABC Certification is the best way to complete Alcoholic Seller Server Training in Texas

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) believes in trained sellers and other staff. The social responsibility of these servers is very important to them. The control is through proper training and certification programs. The TABC Certification provides you with the necessary knowledge and techniques.

You learn the laws regulating sales/service of alcoholic beverages to minors, intoxicated persons, and non-members of a private club. It covers ways to protect yourself and your bar/restaurant from any liability. It explains the way alcohol affects your customers. It also covers refusing sale to customers who are asking for drinks above their limits or to minors.

You can complete this course from Serving Alcohol Inc. in partnership with Learn2Serve. They can enrol you online by filling a quick form. Complete your alcohol training entirely online in 2 to 4 hours or less using any digital device. You also get access to the course content for six months from your enrolment date.

The TABC Certification course incorporates decades or research directly from their staff who served the customers at bars for several years. Because of an experienced course designer. You get some great tips from the industry. There is a direct coordination of this institute with the sates. The key participating states are Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Washington DC, Texas, Pennsylvania and many others as well.

The Beverage Alcohol Sellers and Servers Education and Training (BASSET Training) is the program from the state of Illinois. It is an educational and training tool to sellers/servers of alcoholic beverages to serve responsibly and helps them to stay within the law.

As explained by the Illinois Government, the goals and objectives of this program are as listed below:

  • Train sellers and servers to engage in responsible alcohol service
  • Spot signs of intoxication and use intervention techniques;
  • Prevent DUIs and alcohol-related fatalities
  • Prevent alcoholic beverages sales to underage
  • Work on creating safer communities
  • Educate owners, managers, and staff about insurance and state laws

The important new is, by July 1, 2018, all servers in the bars/restaurants from this state are mandated to take the BASSET Training. It is a good idea to check local with local ordinances for exact training requirements. The local liquor retailers have are responsibility to be aware of state liquor laws, rules and regulations, and local ordinances. The training institute Serving Alcohol Inc. works all over the United States and provides the exact certification as required by each state. Check specific course details for discounts also.

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