Beginning Next Week: InsideCounsel will become part of Corporate Counsel. Bringing these two industry-leading websites together will now give you comprehensive coverage of the full spectrum of issues affecting today's General Counsel at companies of all sizes. You will continue to receive expert analysis on key issues including corporate litigation, labor developments, tech initiatives and intellectual property, as well as Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL) professional development content. Plus we'll be serving all ALM legal publications from one interconnected platform, powered by, giving you easy access to additional relevant content from other InsideCounsel sister publications.

To prevent a disruption in service, you will be automatically redirected to the new site next week. Thank you for being a valued InsideCounsel reader!


N.J. bars busted for fake booze

“Operation Swill” uncovers water-tainted liquor, rubbing alcohol disguised as scotch

More than two dozen bars in New Jersey have been deceiving patrons in a nasty way.

Yesterday, state officials announced that they had raided 63 bars in the state and collected liquor samples for testing as part of a yearlong investigation, “Operation Swill.” They launched the investigation in January after the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control had received more complaints than usual about potentially mislabeled liquor. With the help of an informant with knowledge of the industry, undercover investigators collected the samples by ordering “neat” drinks—or drinks without ice or mixers—from the establishments and then covertly taking samples for testing.

According to officials, 29 New Jersey bars and restaurants, including 13 TGI Fridays, had been passing off fake or cheap booze as high-priced premium liquor. One establishment substituted rubbing alcohol dyed with caramel coloring for scotch; another refilled premium liquor bottles with dirty water.

New Jersey Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa told the AP that the scheme was “a dishonest ruse to increase profits and is a slap in the face of the consumer.”

The establishments have seven days to turn over records that will help authorities determine how many patrons were overcharged and how much they overpaid.

The AP reports that TGI Fridays Inc. is conducting an internal investigation.

For more booze-related news from InsideCounsel, read:

Anheuser-Busch, DOJ reach agreement over Grupo Modelo acquisition

William Koch wins fraud suit over fake wine

Anheuser-Busch sues ex-manager, claims he divulged trade secrets

Suit says Anheuser-Busch waters down its beers

DOJ sues to block beer merger

Intoxicated Inmates

Banned Beer

Five Wives Vodka threatens to sue Idaho over ban

Billionaire may have waited too long to sue over Thomas Jefferson’s wine

Pernod-Ricard settles Irish whiskey trademark suit

Whiskey makers war over trademark infringement

Woman can sue Bacardi over injury

Ashley Post

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.