The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division got a complaint last October that customers of the Surf District Bar and Restaurant in Clear Lake were being served Hawkeye vodka and whiskey, but charged for expensive brands like Absolute and Jack Daniels.
Investigators found heavily-worn bottles labeled with the more expensive brands behind the bar were almost full. Sales records at the Clear Lake business where the bar bought its liquor showed just one bottle of Jack Daniels was purchased between January and October of last year, compared to 94 bottles of cheaper Hawkeye whiskey. The bar bought more than 200 bottles of Hawkeye vodka, but just nine bottles of more expensive vodka brands.
An administrative law judge has ruled the bar’s actions put the public’s health and safety at risk and ordered a 21-day suspension of the establishment’s liquor license. The bar has 30 days to appeal.
The Surf District Bar and Restaurant sits just north of the Historic Surf Ballroom, but the two establishments are separately operated.
(By Bob Fisher, KGLO, Mason City)