Spotted Cow confiscated from New York City bar

2009-11-24T18:00:00Z Spotted Cow confiscated from New York City barBy BARRY ADAMS | badams@madison.com | 608-252-6148 madison.com

Non-criminal charges could be coming against a New York City bar that reportedly was selling a craft beer that isn't licensed to be sold outside Wisconsin. Officials with the New York State Liquor Authority say that on Nov. 6, their investigators confiscated 50 cases of Spotted Cow from the Mad River Bar & Grille on Manhattan's Upper East Side.

The beer, brewed by New Glarus Brewing Co. in Green County, is not licensed for sale outside Wisconsin, said brewmaster Dan Carey.

It's unclear how much Spotted Cow the bar has sold.

Businesses selling alcohol in New York need to purchase their alcohol through a wholesale distributor, said William Crowley, a spokesman for the liquor authority.

The bar, whose Web site only mentions only Coors Light and Bud Light on its "Wisconsin Game Day" menu, could have its liquor license revoked for selling the New Glarus beer and for not paying the appropriate taxes, Crowley said.

The bar, owned by Michael Mastellone, has been cited seven times since 2003 and fined $9,000 for health code violations, over-capacity issues and selling to those underage, according to state documents.

Mastellone did not respond to an interview request from the State Journal.

Spotted Cow, created in 1996, is Carey's most popular beer. He will make about 50,000 barrels of the brew this year.

It's unclear where the Mad River Grille purchased the Spotted Cow, but the beer sells retail in Wisconsin for about $30 a case or $1.25 a bottle.

Carey said he has heard of his beer being sold outside Wisconsin and is often asked if he is going to sell his beer outside of the state, but he said he has no plans for such expansion.

"As goofy as it sounds, we don't want to be a big brewery," Carey said. "We want to control our growth."

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