The Provi beat rolls on

By |2024-06-06T15:50:58+00:00June 6th, 2024|Liquor Case Discussion|


Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits, LLC (“Southern”) and Republic National Distributing Company, LLC (“RNDC”) received bad news last week that Provi’s case alleging Southern and RDNC’s violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act can move forward.

Southern and RNDC filed a motion to dismiss the charges in response to Provi’s lawsuit against them. A motion to dismiss […]

Amicus Brief on expanding franchise laws & Commerce Clause discrimination

By |2024-05-13T20:44:41+00:00May 13th, 2024|Liquor Case Discussion|


It may surprise many of my readers that I recently authored an amicus brief, which advocated for the expansion of a state’s franchise rules. It seems at odds with my free-market principles that abhor economic protectionism.

Liquor franchise rules guarantee that a supplier/manufacturer cannot get out of a distribution agreement with a liquor distributor without […]

PepsiCo calls it quits on Blue Cloud Distribution

By |2024-02-27T23:08:45+00:00February 27th, 2024|Liquor Case Discussion|


PepsiCo has called it a day for Blue Cloud Distribution and will be getting out of the liquor distribution business. This represents a major victory for the wholesale tier. PepsiCo had leased its IP to Boston Beer to make a Hard Mountain Dew, and also leased some of its other brands such as Lipton Hard […]

The DTC scrutiny question

By |2023-11-25T22:58:00+00:00November 25th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|


When I moderated a panel at the Notre Dame Wine, Beer, and Spirits Symposium on DTC shipping and 21st Amendment challenges, a debate sprung up from pro-shipping advocates on the proper standard for judging a discriminatory state liquor law. On one side of the argument was the believe that discriminatory state liquor laws are subject […]

Ohio decides not to seek cert at U.S. Supreme Court in wine retailer shipping case

By |2023-11-02T20:59:29+00:00November 2nd, 2023|Breaking News, Liquor Case Discussion|


The Ohio Attorney General has decided not to seek cert with the United States Supreme Court. On September 27th, the Sixth Circuit issued an order, which stayed the Sixth Circuit’s decision, which reversed and remanded a lower court decision upholding Ohio’s discriminatory shipping law. The Stay was issued at the request of the Ohio AG, […]

California goes business unfriendly again and wine will suffer

By |2023-10-30T00:52:27+00:00October 30th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|


California can’t get out of their way in being business unfriendly and it amazes me that big wine interest groups let them travel down this road so easily. We seem to be slowly turning back the clock from Granholm, where barriers to entry were destroyed, to an environment where barriers to entry are becoming commonplace […]

Judge rejects state’s motion to dismiss in Washington distiller shipping case

By |2023-10-24T23:19:46+00:00October 24th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|



The Court took an absolute Commerce Clause position and relied on a U.S. Supreme Court case, which permits discrimination only when absolutely necessary.

The Court further dismissed the state’s claim that the 21st Amendment shields state discriminatory laws from Commerce Clause challenges. It held that the state misreads U.S. Supreme Court precedent […]

Southern Wine and Spirits becomes Lina Khan’s punching bag

By |2023-10-24T13:51:09+00:00October 24th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|


Recently, it was announced through a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) press release, that the FTC filed a petition in federal court to force Total Wine and More (Total) to produce documents related to the FTC’s investigation into Southern Wine and Spirits (Southern). The FTC order sought documents from Total “as part of its investigation into […]

1st Circuit Goes Concrete in vacating Rhode Island wine retailer case

By |2023-09-08T03:52:35+00:00September 8th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|


The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals in Anvar v. Dwyer (1st circuit decision) affirmed the district court in part, vacated it in part, and remanded for further proceedings.


The 1st Circuit vacated the district court’s decision in very strong terms. It rejected theoretical arguments about essential elements, health and safety, […]

Arizona and New Jersey judges needed to dig deeper

By |2023-08-28T21:58:45+00:00August 28th, 2023|Liquor Case Discussion|


Two recent decisions on wine retailer shipping cases out of Arizona ( Arizona Decision) and New Jersey (NJ Decision) federal courts show how judges are misunderstanding the issues and flat out getting it wrong.

In Arizona much of the decision was based on the judge’s conclusion that siding with the retailer would “require complete […]

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