Alcohol

Boston Bans Bottle Service

|

boston booze

It's Thursday at 4:00 pm, which means the weekend has officially begun in college towns across the country. But bad news is coming down the pike for hearty partiers in Boston: A ban on bottle service in bars.

Letters are going out to unsuspecting bar and club owners at this very moment, informing them that bottle service violates Boston's existing ban on serving more than 2 drinks at a time to a customer.

The hilariously dismissive money quote from Boston Licensing Board Chairman Daniel Pokaski:

"We're not New York and we're not South Beach," he said. "The city of Boston has a lot more to offer than just getting people inebriated. If all they can offer their clientele is just swilling down alcohol, then perhaps they shouldn't be in the business."

Not so long ago, Boston's esteemed politicians professed themselves shocked (shocked!) that people go to baseball games to booze it up.

Via Crispy on the Outside

NEXT: Demand for Gasoline May Be Relatively Price Inelastic But Eventually....

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Stupid liberal Democrat nanny staters.

  2. ban on serving more than 2 drinks at a time to a customer

    If they did not remove the irish from Boston, how did they avoid an uprising?

  3. “We’re not New York and we’re not South Beach”

    Sounds like he’s striving for Portland.

  4. Stupid liberal Democrat nanny staters.

    Aw, come on now, joe lives there, and he’s not a..uh…sorry, never mind.

  5. If all they can offer their clientele is what they want, then they, uh, well, um, I…I get kinda lost here….

  6. I now understand Massachusetts. Everything done there–everything–is to avoid the remotest chance of being attacked by large reptiles.

  7. What is “Bottle Service”?
    The service – a staple in exclusive nightclubs from Miami to Manhattan to Las Vegas – allows big spenders to have private VIP tables in exchange for purchasing a bottle of high-end booze, usually for $300 or more. Servers bring buckets of ice, tumblers and non-alcoholic mixers to make cocktails.

    So, something I’ll never want, but still something a bar should be able to offer. In fact such an upscale perk seems to be exactly the kind of offering that goes beyond just swilling booze.

    The most annoying bar/booze law I’ve ever encountered, was that a tax seal had to be broken on every sale. So the bartender had to open and empty a minibottle for every shot poured.

  8. Every time I start to think that “Boston Legal” is too goofy to be set in Boston, something like this story comes along to set me straight. Where are Denny Crane and Alan Shore when we need them to stand up for bar and club owners in Beantown? Scriptwriters, your work is half done on this one. It’s a slam-dunk. Get typing!

  9. Maybe if they were not so drunk all the time they would stop electing such idiots.

  10. Guys, this is Massachusetts: a state that has a long history of backward and oppressive government.

    It was in Massachusetts that compulsory, state financed public schools were first introduced to the U.S. The motivation: to ensure that children were indoctrinated with the right form of Christianity.

    It was Massachusetts that for many decades outlawed any celebration of Christmas.

    It was Massachusetts that continued segregating public housing well into the 1980’s.

    It was Massachusetts that executed Quakers.

    It was Massachusetts where the police forced grocery stores to stay closed on Thanksgiving.

    Whether burning witches or preventing developers from building houses that poor people can actually afford, the state and its supporters positively delight in shutting down peaceful activity.

    Many of my fellow citizens like to believe that they live in an enlightened state. The reality is that it is a backward place, and that when you dig past the veneer of gentility and liberality exposes practically medieval views on freedom and the rights of man.

  11. Sounds like he’s striving for Portland.

    Portland Oregon?

    It has been my experience that you have to try pretty hard to get within a hundred miles of the place without getting drunk.

  12. It almost sounds torn from the pages of an (early) National Lampoon script:

    Chairman Pokaski: “I don’t know about YOU Sir, but I certainly don’t go to a bar to get soused up on hooch, that I might loose my virtue to carnality with some pretty tavern-maid!”

    Citizen: “The bad news Chairman, she’d probably be ugly. The good news, you’d be drunk anyway!”

  13. Guys, this is Massachusetts: a state that has a long history of backward and oppressive government.

    Well it is not all that bad…on the side of liberty if your name happens to Kennedy you can legally rape and/or kill women. That is something right?

  14. “The city of Boston has a lot more to offer than just getting people inebriated. If all they can offer their clientele is just swilling down alcohol, then perhaps they shouldn’t be in the business.”

    Don’t Boston bars offer pool, pinball, watching the home team lose, getting turned down by skanky women and the other traditional bar amusements?

  15. In a way, he is right. If the bars were not enticing the Bostonians with bottle service, the folks would instead be at the Boston Symphony. Getting drunk.

  16. We have a word for these people in New Hampshire: “Massholes”.

  17. Well it is not all that bad…on the side of liberty if your name happens to Kennedy you can legally rape and/or kill women. That is something right?

    snark mode on
    That, and you get lots of buildings and streets named after you. The greater the number of statues, the more nervous the tyrant.

    Actually, it’s not all that bad. You can still drive a car with a bumper sticker that says: “My gun has killed fewer people than Ted Kennedy’s car” without getting hassled too badly by the local police.
    snark mode off

  18. Fuck Beanheads!!!!!

    Mass is like California on the east coast.

  19. Many of my fellow citizens like to believe that they live in an enlightened state. The reality is that it is a backward place, and that when you dig past the veneer of gentility and liberality exposes practically medieval views on freedom and the rights of man.

    And on top of all that joe lives there? Damn.

  20. “bottle service violates Boston’s existing ban on serving more than 2 drinks at a time to a customer…. ‘The city of Boston has a lot more to offer than just getting people inebriated.'”

    The whole point behind bottle service isn’t to get as inebriated as possible. It’s to reserve the table. And in fact, at $300 a bottle for Grey Goose or Veuve, there is a massive incentive to make it last as long as possible.

    Could Pokaski be more out of touch with reality?

  21. Also, fuck Menino.

  22. The city of Boston has a lot more to offer than…

    New York or South Beach?? What bullshit. If given a choice to be dropped for a day in either New York, South Beach, or Boston, no sane person would pick Boston. Alcohol does for ugly cities what alcohol does for ugly girls.

  23. Could Pokaski be more out of touch with reality?

    Well, I suppose it could turn out he’s wrong about Boston not being New York or South Beach…

    But it seems unlikely. Certainly neither of those places would admit it.

  24. Stupid liberal Democrat nanny staters.

    Aw, come on now, joe lives there, and he’s not a..uh…sorry, never mind.

    Hey! I’m not stupid!

  25. It’s a good thing all those freedom-loving states in flyover country have no nanny laws whatsoever.

  26. Drinking isn’t good for us, the law is meant to protect us, anything that reduces drinking is inherintly a good thing, I’m all for it.

  27. It’s a good thing all those freedom-loving states in flyover country have no nanny laws whatsoever.

    No smoking in bars? Hell in Michigan you can smoke in just about every sit down restaurant. We are not “freedon crushing nanny state bullshit” free, but it appears we have less of that nonsense than many places.

  28. I had to go to Boston once to visit a girlfriend’s adamantly non-drinking brother. Turns out that after you walk that damn red line once, you are pretty much done in Boston if you can’t have beer.

  29. New Chamber of Commerce motto:

    Boston: We Get Drunk at Home

  30. the boston licensing board shines in its inept stupidity even among great massachusetts government agencies like the boston police department (cost $ 2 million+ on aqua teen hunger force toys) and the massachusetts turnpike authority (cost $16 billion+ and 1 consumer fatality so far).
    in my college years, the BLB spent an awesome amount of time and taxpayer money persecuting MIT fraternities for handing out keg beer to local undergrads, evicting active students with 1 day’s notice, preventing even 21+ adults from drinking in their own rooms/houses, etc.
    firing these morons and using their salaries to help subsidize rehab for alcoholics seems at least a million times more effective

  31. Stupid massholes. Can’t we push them all into the ocean?

  32. I totally thought the lede on this post was going somewhere else.

    It’s Thursday at 4:00 pm, which means the weekend has officially begun in college towns across the country. it’s time for the City of Boston to embarrass itself in front of the nation

  33. I hate, hate, hate bottle service in most cases. A club in Plano, TX gets somewhere in the ‘hood of $150 per bottle of vodka (+ tips) to reserve a seat. That seems reasonable next to the menus of European or Las Vegas clubs but there’s no reason to pay that much in Texas.

    Yet, as much as I hate and avoid bottle service (except when in cities mentioned), I hate more some nanny making it illegal. Of course, I never went to that Plano club after Plano made smoking illegal on patios.

  34. Don’t Boston bars offer pool, pinball, watching the home team lose…

    Yeah, but in Boston, the the team usually wins.

  35. Stupid massholes. Can’t we push them all into the ocean?

    Hey, not all of the people in Mass are worthy of pushing into the ocean. There libertarians here, you know. All three of us do not deserve pushing in the ocean.

  36. I have no real comment other than to post anytime my name appears in a thread.

  37. Oh wait, I do have one response for JD – it’s been a while since Boston bars have shown the home team losing.

  38. Oh wait, I do have one response for JD – it’s been a while since Boston bars have shown the home team losing.

    Yeah, Feb. 3rd was it? 😉

    Unless you count the Bruins game 7 disappearance…

  39. Brian- Save your breath on Eryk. Its a Mass thing. I call it denial. And sports tribalism. Of the worst kind.

  40. If Mass is full of Massholes, what do you call all those friggin’ CowHampshire people that drive here for work (and who, therefore, pay Mass State income tax)? Other than stupid, that is.

    Eryk: I don’t know you so I guess I’m Libertarian #4.

  41. Yeah, but in Boston, the the team usually wins.

    The Bruins?

  42. The Giants?

  43. Stop it the two of you. Don’t you know that the Celtics will win the NBA?

  44. The The of course. (Dogs of Lust is 15 years old… woah. time flies, grin)

  45. How can you talk about liquor laws here in Massachusetts when Pennsylvania’s crazy-ass beer-buying regulations still exist?

  46. Why do libertarians have to push every state into maximum liberty? We have 50 states, people are free to move to South Beach or New York or Hartford, CT if they like that kind of thing. If this were a national law, yeah it would be a big deal, but when individual states pass restrictive laws – more diversity. Personally I’m fine with the fact that Boston drinking culture discourages show-offs and the kind of assholes who populate South Beach. And as a New Hampshire native, I’m well aware that NH will never have a bottle service law – not least of all because we don’t have a single swanky night club in the entire state and possibly the ugliest girls in the Union.

  47. Why do libertarians have to push every state into maximum liberty?

    You mean, why do Libertarians *WANT* to push every state into maximum liberty?

    Libertarians haven’t been 1% successful at pushing anything! The U.S. is becoming a police state, and even worse a puritanical theocratic police state! And when right-wing Christians want to ban the devil booze, and libertarains complain, we then have leftists like joe defending the right-wing Christianity morality police as some sort of progressive social democracy.

  48. Is worse than the liberal stronghold of South Carolina, where, technically, bottle service is no problem, because all drinks in bars must be served out of one-drink minibottles?

  49. Why do libertarians have to push every state into maximum liberty?

    Why do liberals have to push every state into maximum tyranny?

  50. lunchstealer,

    mini bottlers are no longer mandatory here in SC, a lot of places still use them of course but they have the option of switching to free pour.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.