Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Beer/Wine Corkage Law Exceptions -- You *Can* Bring Your Own

wine and beerImage by riebschlager via Flickr As many of you know, we have no corkage law in Indiana, but an enterprising attorney and wine lover, sent me some notes on the statute last week with a couple of interesting exceptions. One of the most important?

It is *legal* to bring beer or wine into a restaurant that you have manufactured yourself. As my attorney friend notes, the definition of "manufacture" can be very broad, but at the very least, if you blend and bottle your own wine or brew your own beer for personal consumption, you may take it into a restaurant *completely* *legally*. You may also take these same beverages for a tasting (meaning more than one.)

Since we have no corkage law, restaurants can not charge you a corkage fee. I note this here for two reasons: Quite a few of you are into home beer brewing. Blending your own wines is not unheard of, and the only way to change the current law, disallowing customers to bring their own wines, is to bring it to every one's attention.

If you're interested in the entire statute, along with the exceptions which clearly cover beer or wine brewed for personal use in restaurants, tastings, competitions, and outdoor venues, email me and I'll send it along. If you want to take your own beer or wine to a restaurant, print out the entire statute and politely show it to the general manager. If they refuse, then a polite letter with the statute to management is in order. I feel a joint event with the Hoosier Beer Geeks coming on!

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