Is Low-Proof Booze Headed to New York?

Photo: J. Barmann

A company in California called San Gabriel Beverage Group appears to have cornered the market on things like low-proof “vodka” and “tequila.” Why the scare quotes? Because the stuff isn’t actually vodka or tequila: It’s wine that’s spiked with flavorings and just enough actual booze to still come in under whatever proof (usually in the 20ish percent ABV range) states say is allowed for wine, but not hard liquor. The advantage: Bars and restaurants that only have licenses to serve beer and wine can serve “cocktails” made with this faux booze. A distribution deal for New York state is evidently in the works, which means it could be headed our way soon. Grub SF gave the stuff a try and reports back so that we can all see what we might be in for. [Grub Street SF]