Texas has some restrictive laws that penalize microbreweries and brewpubs alike. For example, a microbrewery may not have state wide distribution, and if you visit their brewery, are prohibited from selling you a single bottle of their beer. They are even prohibited from telling you where to purchase their product. The beer distributors lobby opposes any change in that law. Wineries, on the other hand, can sell you a truckload of wine, tell you where you can buy, and can probably even ship it to you. Distributors probably oppose that as well, but too late, it's law.
Brewpubs may sell you a growler, but may not bottle their beers to sell to distributors for sale in other stores. Wineries with restaurants are not bound by that law either.
It's time to bring some sense to the laws regarding beer and wine in the State of Texas. Let's make wineries and microbreweries operate by the same law regarding distribution.
Step One: Write your state representative. Don't know who that is? Look here. I'm not going to tell you what to write, but be polite and sincere. Don't be abusive and snide. If you don't like their reply, write them again. And again. Hold their feet to the fire, and let them know you want them to be responsive to the citizens of Texas, not some lobbyist for beer distributors.
Step Two: If you take a wine tour, ask the proprietor where they stand on the issue. If they think it would be a great idea, then buy a case of their wine. If they don't ask them what stores sell their wine. You want to be fair to microbreweries, after all.
Step Three: Talk to your friends. Encourage them to write their representatives.
Step Four: Support your local microbrewery. Ask for that beer at every restaurant and store you shop at. Let the retailer know you want it. Ask them how you can help them change the law.
Texas could have a vibrant beer culture, like Colorado has. But you and I are going to have to work to get it.
Labels: Beer Politics