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That requirement meant that Montage Deer Valley, for example, was able to get a liquor license in 2010 only after assurances that the Park City resort would have enough barriers so that diners at one of its restaurants would not see a bar in an adjoining room.
The question with the Montage was its dining room, which was adjacent to a bar. Compliance officers said diners in the far corner of the Montage restaurant could see into the adjoining club, even though columns obstructed most of the view, and the bar itself was about 300 feet away from the restaurant.
Barriers must be erected in restaurants opening after 2010. Their purpose:
Diners » Must not be able to see area were alcoholic drinks are mixed
Open liquor bottles » May not be placed on public display
Bartenders » Mixing drinks must be hidden from view
Utah a laughingstock?
A state representative passed out headlines to the House Revenue and Taxation Committee, showing how Utah’s liquor laws are depicted nationally:
The New York Times » “Utah Liquor Laws, as Mixed Up as Some Drinks”
USA Today » “After trying liberalization, Utah toughens already strict rules”
The Economist » “The drinks flow more freely, except in Utah”
The resort, in turn, installed planters to further obstruct the view.
In other action Wednesday, the House Business and Labor Committee unanimously approved legislation that would let beer wholesalers deliver full-strength beer directly to restaurants or clubs, instead of having to deliver them to the DABC warehouse first. "The public will see no real change: The same beer products in the same containers," said sponsoring Rep. Curt Oda, R-Clearfield. Only the middle-man will be removed.
Lee Davidson and Robert Gehrke contributed to this report.
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