Wine & Alcohol

News & Analysis as of

The Haunted History of the Hallowine Trademark

Brewers, distillers, and vintners are no strangers to themed seasonal offerings, so it’s not surprising that Halloween brings out some decidedly decrepit monikers. From PUMPKINHEAD (think reaping) to NOSFERATU, WITCH’S WIT...more

Advertising Law - October 2014 #3

Permanent Ban From Prize Promotion Business After Sweepstakes Scam - A sweepstakes operator agreed to a permanent ban from the prize promotion business pursuant to a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission after...more

Florida Litigation Update: Appeals Court Clarifies Procedure to Execute Against Alcoholic Beverage License

On September 23, 2014, Florida’s First District Court of Appeal issued its opinion in VMI Entertainment, LLC v. Westwood Plaza, LLC, et. al. clarifying the procedure to execute against a judgment debtor’s alcoholic beverage...more

Beer Is Not the New Wine: USPTO Again Rejects Beer Trademark Citing Wine Mark

As the number of craft breweries and craft beer brands grow, many breweries are finding it increasingly difficult to register their marks, not necessarily because there are many new beer trademarks filed with the USPTO (which...more

Supreme Court’s 2014-15 Term: Antitrust Case May Impact the Activities of Alcohol Industry Public/Private Organizations

On October 14, 2014, the United States Supreme Court heard oral argument in a case that could have significant implications for hybrid public/private “regulatory” bodies. Many such bodies, like state and local wine...more

Local Wholesaler-Retailer Dispute Has Federal Implications

On August 14, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi issued an opinion finding that state regulations bolstered one antitrust claim and hindered another in an ongoing dispute between a northern...more

A whistleblower's battle over beer

(Got your attention?) Yep, you read that right... beer - One often thinks of bribery and corruption happening in major, high profile organizations (Enron, WorldCom, Tyco). Those are certainly the first I think of...more

Volunteers Cause Winery Woes

Volunteers and for-profit businesses shouldn’t be served together. That lesson has proved to be fatal for a small California winery. As reported by the San Jose Mercury News, Westover Winery’s “use of volunteer workers...more

Researchers Develop Technique For Turning Winery Waste Into Biofuels

Winery waste is composed of the skins, pulp, stalks, and seeds that are left over after grapes have been pressed. This waste cannot be used for animal feed or composted, so it typically ends up as toxic landfill. Researchers...more

TTB Issues Expanded List of Allowable Changes to Approved Labels

On Monday, September 29 2014, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) issued Industry Circular 2014-2, which expands the list of Allowable Revisions to Approved Alcohol Beverage Labels....more

EEOC Sues Mims Distributing Company for Religious Discrimination

Beer Distribution Company Unlawfully Failed to Hire Rastafarian Because He Refused to Cut His Hair, Federal Agency Charges - RALEIGH, N.C. - Mims Distributing Company, Inc., a North Carolina corporation that operates a...more

North Carolina ABC Legislative Wrap-Up 2014

The 2014 legislative short session adjourned on August 20, 2014. The General Assembly passed several bills affecting alcoholic beverages in North Carolina. Significant provisions of those bills are summarized below....more

Food Litigation Newsletter - September 2014

In This Issue: - Recent Significant Developments And Rulings ..Voluntary Dismissal in Frito-Lay Pretzel Case ..Court Denies Motion to Dismiss in Florida "Natural" Action ..Court Embraces Standing...more

Beer Bills: New Laws & Legislation on Tap

There are a number of bills and new laws that craft brewers should have on the radar – legislation that could affect operations and distribution. In California, two of these bills became law, while one is still pending...more

A Few Zoning Notes: New Caselaw, Oakwood and Beer, Oh My!

We're going to touch on three separate topics today in this post. First, we'll discuss a recent case from the North Carolina Court of Appeals regarding legal nonconforming uses, burdens of proof and lost zoning maps. ...more

Better Describe Trade Secret If You Want to Protect It

New Castle Beverage, Inc. v. Spicy Beer Mix, Inc. - In an unpublished opinion, the Court of Appeal of the State of California’s Second Appellate District affirmed the lower court’s denial of a preliminary injunction...more

Blackstone and Booze: Wisconsin Court of Appeals Discusses Retroactivity of Judicial Decisions

On August 26, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals released Mixx Night Club v. Milwaukee, 13AP2599, an opinion analyzing the retroactivity of Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions. The case began with a rowdy nightclub in...more

Why FLYING MONKEY WINE Never Got Off the Ground

Continuing our primate theme for this month's newsletter, we thought this would be as good a time as any to remind our readers as to the important distinction between copyrighted artistic works, and use of elements from those...more

Organic Internet Growth: New .ORGANIC Domain Names Launch

If an organic standards body has approved you or your product, you are likely eligible to register an .organic domain name. Interested brand owners should apply as soon as possible and before the sunrise period closes on...more

Absinthe Makers Are Not Toasting In Switzerland

Although once illegal in the United States, absinthe can now be consumed in your local bars. It was a favorite drink of writers and artists such as Ernest Hemmingway, Vincent van Gogh, Oscar Wilde and Pablo Picasso. ...more

Role Reversal: David Bullying Goliath?

When claims of trademark infringement make the news, it is often because a billion dollar corporation is suing old man Donaldson’s tavern for trademark infringement (Although, McDonaldson’s might have been a bad choice…). ...more

Boating Safety Issues

Most people already knows that drinking alcohol and driving a car is a dangerous combination, however, there is less awareness of the same dangers while operating a boat. Mix water, a boat and throw in alcohol and the results...more

The Sober Truth of New Jersey’s BYOB Law and the Acquisition of a Liquor License

New Jersey became home to America’s first commercial distillery when, in 1780, an immigrant from Scotland established an Applejack production facility in what is now Colts Neck. Since that time, New Jerseyhas become the...more

Distribution Agreements in Pennsylvania: Til Death Do Us Part

One of the most exciting moments in the existence of a new brewery is the moment you ink your very first distribution agreement. Yes, you never forget your first: you’ve arrived, you’re now part of the Show, and now you’re...more

West Virginia Upholds Disclaimer Based on Liquor Liability Exclusion

In its recent decision in Essex Ins. Co. v. Napple’s Bullpen, LLC, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97186 (N.D. W.Va. July 17, 2014), the United States District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia had occasion to consider...more

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