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2009_02_mrpatkuleto.jpgPat Kuleto is currently involved in seven restaurants, but according to California's "tied-house" laws, he can only sell his own wine in two of those and his winery cannot supply more than 15% of the booze there. Turns out the Big Guy wasn't following those rules, leading to a problem...a rather big problem. At first, Kuleto was "offered" a stiff penalty: close Farallon, Boulevard and Nick's Cove for three months or don't serve alcohol (almost the same thing), plus a $300K fine. Obviously, this was the bad option, and Kuleto got a better deal: "After extensive and expensive negotiating, he was fined about $80,000 and says he paid the fine personally." [Wines & Vines, photo]


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