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Posted at 12:49 PM ET, 10/31/2011

The two-pack is the new single beer

Walk into the Chinatown Market at Sixth and H Streets NW, and for $3.25, tax included, you can get yourself two 24-ounce cans of Miller Lite, Bud Light or Steel Reserve. Or if that’s not strong enough, the same amount of money will get you the same amount of Full Tilt, a malt liquor that contains 12 percent alcohol by volume.

Ask any community activist, and that would seem like a problem. That’s a lot of booze for not a whole lot of money, after all, and the clientele outside the market doesn’t seem to have much of a problem drinking on nearby sidewalks.

Ironically enough, the two-pack is the new single beer — the very same single beer that was banned throughout large swaths of the city starting in 2008. That year, the D.C. Council made selling single beers illegal in Wards 2 and 6 and in Mount Pleasant; since then, the ban has expanded to cover all of Wards 4, 7 and 8. (Fearing the voting power of those likely to drink large single-sale bottles of Belgian ales, exceptions were worked into the law for Wards 2 and 6.)

But much like prohibition just pushed drinking underground, the ban on single beers has just led producers to slap two cans together and price them competitively.

[Continue reading Martin Austermuhle’s post at]

Martin Austermuhle blogs at DCist . The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

By  |  12:49 PM ET, 10/31/2011

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