Thursday, January 24, 2008

Yes, Virginia, There Is a Sangria Ban

Right now, any bar or restaurant owner in Virginia who serves sangria is violating a state law. Sound preposterous? Read this article from today's Wash Post.

The law at issue is 75 years old. The threat of legal action has prompted Jaleo, a Spanish tapas eatery in Arlington, Va., to change its recipe for sangria that is served at its suburban Virginia locations.
"It disturbs us," [a general manager at Jaleo] said. "We can't offer real sangria."

It's not just sangria. Other popular drinks are also
off-limits, including kir royals, which are made with sparkling wine, and boilermakers, which include beer and a shot of liquor. Also prohibited are a host of newly fashionable beer cocktails . . .

"It was something that caught us off guard. It is not something that has been on the radar for us," said Barrett Hardiman, director of government relations for the Virginia Hospitality and Travel Association, which represents about 1,100 restaurants in the state. "A lot of people are surprised. . . . It seems archaic to us."
It is archaic.

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