State cracks down on craft beer take-out

9:33 PM, Feb 10, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +
Three Calhoun's restaurants as well as Smoky Mountain Brewery in Maryville are no longer selling its craft beer "to-go."

An old law is brewing new troubles.

For one company, it is is affecting how and where you can buy craft beer.

Three Calhoun's restaurants as well as Smoky Mountain Brewery in Maryville are no longer selling its craft beer "to-go."

Last summer, the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) cited several Copper Cellar Restaurants.

"It's a law they just decided to enforce. I believe the law went into effect in the mid-'90s. So we've been selling 'to-go' beer for over a decade and now it's been an issue," said Bart Fricks, Copper Cellar COO.

According to Fricks, only breweries that meet certain requirements can sell beer for take-out.

Fricks said the restaurants decided to comply within the last two to four weeks.

Customers can still take home craft beer at Smoky Mountain Brewery locations in Turkey Creek, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, as well as Calhoun's on Bearden Hill.

However, the procedure to receive the beer is different.

Before customers could buy craft beer upfront and exit through the main door.

Now a worker escorts the customer through the brewery, makes the beer exchange, and he/she exits through a side or back door.

"It felt kind of strange having to be let out through the back door. It was different. Felt like I was doing something wrong or something," said Jackson Griffith.  

Some locations have temporary liquor licenses while citations are still on the table.

Restaurants operating on temporary liquor licenses cannot get its licenses renewed while it has citations.

Those citations are on appeal right now.

Frick said he plans to sit down with TABC in March.

He is urging people to contact their local state representatives in an attempt to get the law changed.

Copper Cellar restaurants no longer selling craft beer include the following:

Calhoun's The Original at Pellissippi Pkwy
Calhoun's On Tennessee River
Calhoun's Ft. Loudon.
Smoky Mountain Brewery, Maryville

Most Watched Videos