Fast food chains, with their drive-through lanes and quickly prepared and consumed meals seem an
unlikely place to sell beer and wine. But more and more of these restaurants are doing just that in
an attempt to bolster their bottom lines. This week, Sonic Burger, which operates 3,500 locations
nationwide, will begin selling beer and wine at its new Homestead location in Miami, Florida. A second
location in Ft. Lauderdale plans to follow suit. Customers will be able to choose from among three draft
beers, 25 bottled beers and ten wines.
Three of the six Whopper Bars — upscale versions of Burger King restaurants — recently began serving
bottled beer in Las Vegas, Kansas City and Miami. Chuck Fallon, North America President, Burger King
Corp., said at the opening of the Miami location in January 2010, "We are pleased to offer our guests
the option of pairing America's Favorite Burger with a great American beer in this ideal destination." But
critics feel this combo could encourage drunk driving as well as ruin the family-friendly atmosphere of
fast food joints.
Even Starbucks recently started serving beer and wine in select Seattle locations. Starbucks' Olive Way
shop was the first to do so under the brand's name, when it reopened in October 2010 following an
extensive renovation. Serving alcohol after 4 p.m., this Starbucks location focuses on Pacific Northwest
beers and wines, such as Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Snoqualmie "Naked" (Organic) Riesling.
Beers sell for about $5 per bottle, while wines are available by the glass or bottle. But don't ask for them
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