Ever wish you could get all buzzed on beer, or all tipsy on wine while you carefully thumbed the fresh pages of a crisp paperback at Barnes & Noble?

Well, for all the New Yorkers who held out hope that this dream might some day become reality, things are definitely looking up.

That's right; beer and wine might be coming to Barnes & Noble in New York City.

Soon, among the smells of fresh ink and off-the-press pages, mingling with the scent of brewing coffee and customers immersed in stories, there might be other customers with a hot smell on their breaths. These ones will probably be reading too, but they'll be happily buzzed.

Here's the hot take on the situation: according to Good E-Reader, Barnes & Noble applied for a liquor license from the New York State Liquor Authority. 

Kevin Danow is the NYC attorney who consulted with Barnes & Noble on their license application. He said select Barnes & Nobles will test out selling beer and wine at the stores' cafes. He also said it's highly likely the cafes' menus will be adjusted to better pair with beer and wine.


The first location to test the addition of alcoholic beverages will sadly not be in NYC. It'll be in New Hartford, New York at a Barnes & Noble on 4811 Commercial Drive.

We're hoping all of that location's customers will come out and buy the booze, so Barnes & Nobles will see that people like it, and bring the drinks to NYC.

That's all we ever want, really, for people to bring the drinks to NYC. 

Why is Barnes & Noble implementing this super chill new idea? We can't say for sure, but we can speculate.

It's no secret Barnes & Noble has a tough gig competing with Amazon. We mean, how can you compete for a service that lets you browse books with the click of a button, and then, with another click, brings the book right to your doorstep, sometimes within the hour

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They compete on nearly every level, Barnes & Noble's debt is climbing, their cash flow is disappearing altogether, and their e-reader, The Nook, has never stood up to Amazon's kindle. 

It's also no secret that the only reason Barnes & Noble was able to outpace North America's other chain bookstore, Borders, was because Barnes & Nobles has the monopoly on bookstores on college campuses where students are compelled to buy textbooks for exorbitant prices.

Still, campus bookstore sales weren't enough to prevent the last two Barnes & Nobles in Queens from closing earlier this year, an eventuality fully realized today in Bayside and Forest Hills. 

This brings us to our main hypothesis. The biggest draw of NYC's fabulous, vibrant, brilliant independent bookstores, aside from their character, of course, are their booze-fueled readings. 

If you haven't been to an alcohol lubricated event at Housing Works or McNally Jackson, you should get there. They're a blast.


So, Barnes & Noble acquiring beer and wine accomplishes two feats. It allows the company to gain leverage on Amazon's  while also staying on-pace with NYC's independent bookstores' flair-- something particularly important as Amazon builds off the success of its physical, real stores like the one in Seattle

If you want to know what we really think, the answer is that we're confused. We'll admit that sometimes we shop at Amazon for the sake of convenience, but our true allegiance lies firmly with the independent booksellers in this city.

Still, we don't hate Barnes & Noble. We're not completely heartless. We also love beer and wine, so we definitely don't hate the idea of getting drunk at Barnes & Noble. We think alcohol would be a nice addition to NYC's Barnes & Nobles, so long as it is at least reasonably priced.  

Check out First-Ever Zaro's Bakery Closed Yesterday in the Bronx

[via Good E-Reader] [Feature Image Courtesy NYC Magazine]