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Sunday, November 9, 2008

LCBO to go 24/7 in time for Christmas? Rumours fly...

One of my favourite moles in the LCBO Accounting Department is working with a study team to find a way to be accessible to the public 24/7. There's no problem with the website -- it's just with the stuff you pour.
One of the major problems is the employee pay for non-standard time: where to get the money? The main idea they are working on is to INCREASE the price of alcohol by 10% -- if you buy it between the hours of midnight and 8 AM. This seems reasonable, and the idea is being selectively leaked to a variety of informants to see how the public reacts.
It is hoped that the concept will be ready by December 1, just in time for the annual Christmas splurge.
Initially, there will only be four stores in the GTA open 24/7, but if the idea flies, then within a week there will be others in the larger urban districts of Ontario. I understand that they will eventually extend this 24/7 option to The Beer Store by December 20, but will close down the bottle return function during those night hours. To maximize their own revenues, the LCBO will NOT allow winery stores or winery tasting rooms to be open 24/7.
In a response from the temperance movement, a spokesperson said: "24/7 should mean, at least to us, that the LCBO is only open 24 hours a week, and then for only 7 months of the year. This is a disgrace...".
The Slow Food movement had no comment as their policy is always to wait and see.
Wine writers were anticipating that LCBO lab tastings, which may involve almost 200 products, may now begin at 6 AM and close by Noon.
Restaurateurs were hopeful that alcoholic beverages may soon be served at breakfast and at early brunches.
More on this as it develops, but be prepared for the usual LCBO denials.

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