Monday, May 25, 2015

PA self-serve wineshops to check buyers' sobriety

Conshohocken's Simple Brands LLC sets up self-serve wine kiosks in PA supermarkets

PA self-serve wineshops to check buyers' sobriety

Video: Wine Kiosks Setup in Harrisburg

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, which controls most bottled liquor and wine sales in the state through state-owned stores, today started selling wine from self-service kiosks powered by James Lesser's Simple Brands LP, Conshohocken, at two Giant Food Store markets in the Harrisburg area.

No clerks; instead, shoppers will insert their drivers' licenses, which will check their age, and breathe into sobriety-testing machines to make sure they're not already potted. Drinkers (.02+ breath-alcohol content) won't be served.

Spokeswoman Kelly Leighton confirms this is for real. "If the pilot test proves successful, the PLCB plans to expand to 100 kiosks located in supermarkets in urban, suburban and rural communities across Pennsylvania. The list of stores is not yet final."

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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com, distefano251@gmail.com, 215.854.5194 or 302.652.2004.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

Joseph N. DiStefano