CLEAR LAKE — The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division announced on Monday that the Surf District Bar and Restaurant in Clear Lake has been ordered to serve a 21-day suspension for violations of the state’s liquor laws after refilling liquor containers with cheaper brands of alcohol.
An individual submitted a complaint to the ABD on October 10th of last year that the establishment had specifically poured Hawkeye brand vodka and whiskey into more expensive counterparts. The complaint also alleged that the bar was putting a mix of Hawkeye Whiskey and “apple pucker” into the Crown Royal Apple bottle.
An ABD investigator 15 days later found heavily-worn bottles of Jack Daniels and Crown Royal Apple behind the bar were almost full.
The investigator looked through the records of the Quick Shop in Clear Lake where the establishment said they purchased their liquor between January 1st and October 25th of last year and found that only one bottle of Jack Daniels was purchased but 94 bottles of the cheaper Hawkeye whiskey were bought.
During the same period, only five bottles of Absolute Citron vodka, two bottles each of Tito’s and Absolute vodka, and no bottles of Grey Goose were purchased, but 206 bottles of Hawkeye vodka were bought.
Similarly, only one bottle of Crown Royal whiskey and no bottles of Crown Royal apple were purchased, but 12 bottles of Dekuyper Sour Apple Pucker were bought.
An administrative law judge on Monday issued a decision and agreed with evidence presented that cheaper liquor was poured into more expensive bottles and that the actions of the establishment were serious and put the public’s health and safety at risk.
The suspension shall start no earlier than November 18th. The Surf District’s owners have 30 days to appeal the decision. You can read the judge’s full decision by clicking here