Lobbying Affiliate: MML&K Government Solutions

Alcoholic Beverage Regulation

Just another law firm. Like bourbon is just "brown water."

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Experienced Lexington Liquor License Lawyers

The alcoholic beverage law practice of McBrayer, led by member Stephen G. Amato, provides intelligent and strategic counsel to local, regional and national clients involved in the manufacture, distribution and retail sales of alcoholic beverages in Kentucky. Our clients are diverse and include brewers, distributors, bars, restaurants, hotels and shopping centers, as well as package businesses such as liquor stores, grocery stores and C-stores.

Licensing and Enforcement

For most clients, the main issues in alcoholic beverage law revolve around acquiring and maintaining the proper licenses and properly handling enforcement of applicable laws by state and federal regulatory authorities, such as the Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) and Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB). Our firm is one of the preeminent firms handling these issues in Kentucky. We assist clients with federal-level issues such as bonding, permitting and brewers' notices. The bulk of our work involves state-level licensing and enforcement issues for retailers and distilled spirits and malt beverage distributors. Our attorneys counsel clients on matters such as:

  • Obtaining the correct liquor license
  • Maintaining the license and avoiding violations
  • Communication and cooperation with the Kentucky ABC
  • Impact of ownership changes on existing licenses
  • Defense against allegations of illegal alcohol sales due to lack of proper licenses, expired liquor licenses, sales to minors and other allegations

Understanding Kentucky Law on Alcoholic Beverages

Our state's laws are based on a system created immediately after the end of Prohibition. Since that time, there has never been a full and complete overhaul of the legislation. Rather, the laws and regulations have been created on an ad hoc basis to solve problems as they arise. As a result, our system is highly complex and often seems inconsistent or incomplete. Clients rely on our ability to work with these laws to obtain positive results. We understand the limitations and flexibility of this difficult set of laws, and we are skilled at creating common-sense arguments to accomplish our clients' goals.

The McBrayer Advantage

Decisions involving alcohol licensing and enforcement are made either in the halls of the Kentucky General Assembly or in the offices of the Kentucky ABC, both located in the capital of Frankfort. Our firm has a Frankfort office that deals with government relations, including alcoholic beverage regulations, on a regular basis. Further, our main office is a short 25-mile drive to Frankfort. These locations allow us to serve clients conveniently and efficiently. To learn more about our government relations practice, visit our Government Solutions website.

Take the First Step to Success

To discuss how our firm can assist you and your business with any aspect of alcoholic beverage law, call 859-231-8780 or contact our law firm online. With law offices in Lexington and Louisville and a government relations practice in Frankfort with a presence in Washington, D.C., we serve clients throughout Kentucky and the United States.


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  • Our Clients - Tony's
    Our Clients - Tony's
  • Our Clients - Kentucky Eagle, Inc.
    Our Clients - Kentucky Eagle, Inc.
  • Our Clients - Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge
    Our Clients - Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge

Who We Serve

  • 21c Hotel
  • Aimbridge Hospitality
  • Alltech Beverage Division, LLC
  • BJ's Restauarant and Brewhouse
  • Bluegrass Hospitality
  • Chase Tap Room
  • Georgia's Kitchen
  • Golden Entities
  • Harvey's Bar
  • Hooters
  • International Tuna d/b/a Sully's
  • Interstate Hotels (Hilton Hotel)
  • Jefferson Davis Inn
  • Jean Farris Winery & Bistro
  • Johnson Bros Liquor Company
  • Kentucky Eagle
  • McCarthy's
  • Morton's Steakhouse
  • Mozzaria
  • Newport on the Levee
  • Nick Ryan's
  • Pub at Burnside d/b/a Pizza Pub
  • Saddle Ridge at South Broadway
  • Schwall, I, LLC
  • Shakespeare & Co.
  • The Apiary
  • Tin Roof
  • Tolly Ho
  • Tramonte and Sons
  • Two Keys Tavern
  • Victorian Square
Lexington, KYLouisville, KYFrankfort, KYFrankfort, KY: MML&K Government Solutions