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New St. Paul neighborhood restaurants might get hard liquor

Councilmember Bostrom wants to stand behind gramma and her hooch. Brave man.

Councilmember Bostrom wants to stand behind gramma and her hooch. Brave man.

Grandma Gertrude wants a dirty martini with her broiled filet of sole and she gives no shits whether there is a darling neighborhood restaurant right next door to your new Tudor that has the best broiled sole, PLUS a fabulous beer and wine list. Because she wants that damn martini. You'll all be dining downtown this evening. 

Some neighborhood restaurants on both sides of the river have long lamented the liquor licensing restrictions on serving strong alcohol. While some people are just fine with beer and wine, for others, any impediment between they and their Manhattan is a deal breaker. And so the restaurants lose potential business. 

The St. Paul City Council has moved to lift this liquor cap for new neighborhood restaurants. But one council member, Dan Bostrom, is standing firm, and they'll need a unanimous vote to make the change. According to the Pioneer Press, Bostrom is concerned that restaurants will cluster, making neighborhoods noisy and boisterous, and also that the changes will be a slippery slope. He thinks that once they're able to serve hard alcohol, they'll push to serve until 2 a.m., as downtown restaurants do (the potential changes come with restrictions that they must halt all alcohol sales at midnight). 

A lead sponsor of the changes, council member Chris Tolbert, has said he is appealing to Bostrom.  

A final decision will be made on Wednesday.