Utah's pulling back the so-called "Zion Curtain," in a time when consumers demand value and convenience. It's the first major overhaul to Utah's liquor laws since banishing the mini-bottles and Utah's ski areas couldn't be more psyched. Gone are the "private clubs."
Utah bars are now open to the general public and you can kiss good-bye to those "membership fees" at every watering hole. Bar-hopping is destined to become a Park City pastime this winter. The state's previous private club system required customers to fill out an application and pay a fee for the right to enter a bar. Utahns rarely purchased more than one or two memberships for the entire region prior to the change because of the hassle and cost. That put a crimp in where they would spend their beer bucks.
The new laws require businesses to scan driver licenses. The recorded information is retained on site for seven days. This should cut down on the number of fake IDs flashed at the door.
The drinks are still weak, however. One and one-half ounces per shot and 3.2 percent alcohol at the tap. Stronger brews will cost you more. Be careful too when driving home. Utah has a zero tolerance policy. Drink and drive and you will lose your license. The legal limit is .08 percent.
Note to vacationing families: any club that gets half of its sales from food will allow minors inside if accompanied by adults.