Why we're here...

Beer culture is coming of age. At any store, restaurant, bar, or friend's house you can now find at least a few good brews. In fact, there seem to be so many new beers, breweries and bars it's difficult to separate the good, the bad, and the mediocre.

If you're going spend $10 on one beer, what should you buy? If you're going to drive 2 hours to check out a brewery, what's worth your time? If you're going to plan a Friday night, what has a good selection and friendly atmosphere? We're here to help you answer these questions.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Campaign to End Sacramento's Absurd Ban on Your Favorite Bottled Beers

The below law applies to Sacramento's "grid" or the downtown and midtown area. You may have read about this in the Sacramento News & Review.

       5.08.100 Imposition of conditions upon any licensee requesting a letter of public convenience or necessity.
     A.     No letter of public convenience or necessity shall be issued by the chief of police nor approved by the planning commission on appeal or the city council on call-up unless the proposed licensee agrees, in writing, that if the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board issues a license to sell alcoholic beverages the license will be subject to the following conditions at all times the license is in use:
     1.      Sales of beer and malt beverages shall be in quantities of not less than a six-pack;
     2.      Sales of wine shall be in containers of at least seven hundred fifty (750) ml;
     3.      Wine coolers, whether made for wine or malt products, shall not be sold in quantities of less than factory packs of four;
     4.      Distilled spirits shall be sold in containers of at least two hundred (200) ml;
The law also applies to the Broadway/Stockton Special district. It was passed in the late 1990's because the Sacramento City Council was "worried about alcohol abuse in Midtown and downtown." Understandable. But times have changed and the craft beer world is skyrocketing. There are more breweries now than at anytime in American history. 

To point out the obvious, American craft brewers widely use the 22oz bottle for a variety reasons, some of them economic. Some beers are only available in 22oz bottles. This law bans the sale of single serve containers like the 22oz bottles by retail stores or restaurants. Let's imagine you enjoyed a glass of a great new beer at Burgers and Brew. You hadn't seen it anywhere else. Well, Burgers and Brew cannot sell you a bottle of that to take home because of this law. Yes it's absurd and time to repeal it.

Lastly, the law does nothing to stop the problem is was intended to address - alcohol abuse. If you have spent anytime in midtown and downtown you might note the number of drunk folks walking around at night. These folks are probably drunk from drinking cheap beer, liquor or wine, which is readily available across the area.

So my fellow beer geeks, I ask that you take action. Whether you live in Sacramento or not. There will be plenty more of these laws popping up across California and the US as the craft beer world runs into decades of old laws. Let's get ready to repeal some dumb laws.

A shout out to Pacific Brew News to posting the information I included in the email below. 

So here is what you do:

Step 1: Copy and Paste these emails into your the "To" section of a new email.
aashby@cityofsacramento.org, ssheedy@cityofsacramento.org, rfong@cityofsacramento.org,, scohn@cityofsacramento.org, kmccarty@cityofsacramento.org, bpannell@cityofsacramento.org, jschenirer@cityofsacramento.org, dfong@cityofsacramento.org, mayor@cityofsacramento.org

Step 2: Enter "Repeal Single Serve Ban" Into Your Subject

Step 3: Copy the Email Template Below Into the Body, Personalize It and Then Hit "Send".

Step 4: Get Your Friends to Send and Personalize an Email Too. 

Step 5: Inform the Blog of the Responses.


Dear Mayor and City Councilmembers,

I am requesting that you repeal Section A of chapter 5.08.100 of the Sacramento City Code which bans "Sales of beer and malt beverages shall be in quantities of not less than a six-pack."

I enjoy craft beers, one of which is [ENTER YOUR FAVORITE BEER HERE]. It is often sold in a single serve container and not a six-pack. I am able to purchase this beer at grocery stores, bottle shops and liquor stores, except in the downtown and midtown area of Sacramento.

I understand the City's goal of curbing alcohol abuse. However, banning single serve craft beers does not accomplish that goal. 

Craft beers are an important economic engine for California. Furthermore, California Craft beers are world renowned and have received many national and international awards; including Sacramento's own Rubicon Brewing Company. The Stone Brewery of Escondido, California will be the first American craft brewery to open a site in Europe. Yet, I cannot purchase these internationally recognized beers at retail stores in downtown and midtown Sacramento.

I would like to inform you of some facts published by the Beer Institute and National Beer Wholesalers Association:

5,940 - Number of People Hired Directly by California Brewers
$446,498,175 – Wages Paid by California Brewers

11,743 – Number of People Employed by California Beer Wholesalers
$931,668,114 – Wages Paid by California Beer Wholesalers

99,557 – Number of People Employed by California Beer Retailers
$2,753,293,958 – Wages Paid by California Beer Retailers

117,240 – Total Number of Jobs Created by California’s Beer Industry
$4,131,460,247 – Total Wages Paid to California Beer Industry Employees

$2,270,480,806 – Business Taxes Generated for California by its Beer Industry
$845,604,442 – Consumption & Excise Taxes Paid by California’s Beer Industry

Furthermore, the Great American Beer Festival is the country's largest beer competition. In 2010, California brewers brought home more medals than any other state: 52 of the competition’s 236 medals (or 22%) – and more gold medals than any other state (19 of 79 awarded).

Thank you for considering my request. Please reply to this email and inform me of how you will address my request.




  1. Great Post! Thanks for putting this out there

  2. Great work. Can you add in stats about the demographics of craft beer drinkers?