Even as the various litigation questions get asked and answered to attract headlines, we are continuing to support many clients in each tier of the alcohol supply chain to deal with the changes brought by I-1183 and its implementation. The WSLCB and suppliers, distributors, and retailers are full-steam ahead on spirits privatization — including ongoing… Continue Reading
Great work, Joe Dobbes! We are proud to have represented 4 out of the last 6 wineries that have been named #1 hottest wine brand by Wine Business Monthly.
Joe Dobbes, Oregon winemaker, named the nation’s No. 1 ‘hot brand’ winner of 2011… Continue Reading
The maker of the controversial Four Loko flavored malt beverages has agreed to label its products with disclosures stating how much alcohol they contain compared to "regular" beer.
Craft beer manufacturers and producers in other categories should watch related regulatory efforts with some caution. TTB has previously proposed that all alcoholic… Continue Reading
The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (“DISCUS”), which represents spirits manufacturers and suppliers, this week released new guidelines (PDF) for marketing and promoting alcoholic beverage products via social media and other digital platforms.
While guidelines such as these are not binding, and not directly enforced by … Continue Reading
This week, Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber signed House Bill 3280, which creates new land use rules governing wineries on farmland. This legislation is an important step forward for the Oregon wine industry and anyone who cares about sustainable agriculture. The bill does however leave several important questions unanswered.
Oregon’s… Continue Reading
This is an interesting time for the Northwest wine industry. Economic recession and a sophisticated and demanding consumer market have created unique challenges and great opportunities for winemakers throughout the region. In addition, a new executive director for the Oregon Winegrowers Association will bring new ideas and direction to the industry.… Continue Reading
DWT client Mateveza (an organic, naturally caffeinated beer) responded quickly to the State of Michigan’s efforts to ban "alcohol energy drinks" from the market.
The rash of regulatory responses to caffeinated products is driven largely by headline-grabbing problems at a few certain campus parties (which appear to have included not … Continue Reading
The TTB and USDA entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) regarding the use of the term "organic" on alcoholic beverage labels and advertisements. Pursuant to the MOU, the TTB will still be responsible for analyzing alcoholic beverage labels and advertising, but will review all claims of "100% organic", "organic"… Continue Reading
The Oregon Liquor Control Commission is considering adopting a new satellite liquor store pilot program. The purpose of the program is to evaluate the merits of operating satellite liquor stores in smaller communities where there is a fluctuating, seasonal demand due to tourism or other factors. The pilot program will consist of up to six new satellite… Continue Reading
The dripping red wax seal on a bottle of Maker’s Mark bourbon has been deemed a protectable trademark: www.nytimes.com/2010/04/03/business/03bourbon.html… Continue Reading
An interesting case; the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) found that "KHORAN" for wines is disparaging: thettablog.blogspot.com/2010/03/precedential-no-9-divided-ttab-panel.html.… Continue Reading
A new scam is targeting Oregon restaurants and bars!
Oregon restaurants and bars should be aware of a new scam targeting them. The scam preys on those who may have inadvertently let their business registration status or license lapse. The scammer sends threatening letters to these businesses and demands money in exchange for not filing complaints … Continue Reading
The OLCC has proposed a final draft of its new rules regarding the advertising and promotion of happy hour in Oregon. The rule making hearing regarding the proposed rules is scheduled for Tuesday, February 9, 2010 at 10:00 am in Room 103A at the Commission offices, but the record will remain open for written comments until February 23, 2010. You … Continue Reading
Jesse Lyon, partner at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, was named as one of Oregon’s preeminent wine industry legal experts in the December 18, 2009 edition of the Portland Business Journal.
To read more, click here: http://portland.bizjournals.com/portland/stories/2009/12/21/focus1.html… Continue Reading
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is joining the regulatory movement against products marketed as "energy" alcohol drinks. "Espresso stouts" and other craft beers and spirits are not the intended target of these sorts of things…but this is a movement even those producers should keep an eye on. The U.S. Government’s… Continue Reading
I have volunteered to help pull together some last-minute details and rally a few more attendees for the " Vine to Cellar" wine industry event at the Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg, Ore. on November 6-7. The event is intended to provide both something of a celebration at this beautiful new hospitality venue as well as substantive vineyard/wine… Continue Reading
Even Gallo can’t get the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to change its mind about whether beer and wine are related goods. The relatedness of beer and wine (and spirits too) is a long standing policy of the USPTO (and some federal courts) and despite the efforts of "big gun" trademark owners like Gallo, the policy still stands, see: http://thettablog.blogspot.com/2009/09/finding-wine-and-beer-related-ttab.html… Continue Reading
Quick casual restaurants, such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Burgerville, and Subway, and coffee shops, including Starbucks, are adding alcohol to their menus to attract customers and increase sales. Burgerville recently added wine and beer to one of its restaurants in Vancouver, Washington. Starbucks announced in July that it is re-branding one of its existing… Continue Reading
A retail sales agent for a Corvalis, Oregon liquor store recently submitted a petition to amend the rules regarding external advertising for Oregon liquor stores. The proposed rule changes would allow Oregon liquor stores more flexibility in advertising their store (i) outside the store’s location, (ii) in publications and (iii) on… Continue Reading
In April, Washington state Governor Christine Gregoire signed HB 1441, which will revamp the state’s beer distribution franchise laws. The new laws will be effective on July 26, 2009.
Washington state beer franchise laws govern all agreements between wholesalers and "suppliers" (defined as in and out-of-state manufacturers … Continue Reading
With state revenues shrinking, many state and local agencies—especially those regulating the hospitality industry—are looking for increased fee mechanisms to bolster their budgets. This can lead to unforeseen and unneeded red tape, often unrelated to spending needs. One example is Oregon’s SB 604, which would re-create "salesperson… Continue Reading
The Washington State Legislature is about to pass—and the Governor is expected to sign—HB 2040. This bill effectively wipes out tied house laws in Washington. A simple example will explain the situation:
Bill owns Bill’s Distribution Inc. It distributes beer and wine in Washington. Under this new law, Bill could form his own restaurant… Continue Reading