Any time you find yourself seated in front of a glowering panel of public officials trying to explain the subtleties of a buttery nipple, it’s safe to say you’re not having a very good day.
The details: In February, a woman and her friends were served drinks—including a round of the aforementioned, anatomically dubbed liqueur-based shots—at the Sports Page Bar & Grill in Kihei. The woman then left the bar and was immediately busted for DUI.
Flash forward a few months and Barry Tippett, proprietor of the Sports Page, is facing the LC Adjudication Board on charges of serving an already intoxicated individual. In addition to doing an admirable job of not giggling when describing what goes into the buttery nipple, Mr. Tippett, who pleaded no contest, raised an excellent question: How do you know when enough becomes too much, especially when someone’s been drinking before they enter your place?
Obviously it’s part of a bartender’s job to make that judgment, and certainly there are cut-and-dried cases where everybody in the room can see that the guy with his eyes half-closed peeing in the potted plant muttering about his ex probably shouldn’t be given another Heineken.
But what about when it’s not so clear? Some people get quiet and reserved when they’re drunk; others are raging alcoholics whose blood-alcohol level can be off the charts while they’re still carrying on a normal conversation about the weather. This doesn’t absolve establishments of the responsibility to avoid over-serving. But it should lead to a whole lot of questions, which didn’t seem to be asked in the Case of One Nipple Too Many.
Such as: What, how much and where did the woman drink before entering the Sports Page? This lady likely dipped her beak at multiple bars, but only the last place she stopped for a buttery nightcap caught any heat.
And heat they caught, in the form of a $2,000 fine.