T.G.I. Friday’s bars suspected of replacing premium liquors with cheap alcohol

Of 29 bars officials in New Jersey raided Wednesday for allegedly putting lower-quality liquor in high-end bottles, 13 were T.G.I. Friday’s locations. Folks took to Facebook to let the restaurant chain have it.

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That wink-and-a-nod charade sets a mood, and everyone’s in on it. Not so for allegations of another, far more serious deception.

If an investigation proves some of the chain’s New Jersey locations were selling cheap alcohol and claiming it was high-end liquor, what those customers were told was Grey Goose was really Gordon’s.

Following a yearlong investigation called “Operation Swill,” agents from New Jersey’s Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control raided 29 bars statewide on Wednesday, 13 of which were T.G.I. Friday’s locations, for allegedly filling bottles for expensive liquors with cheaper brands.

Friday’s isn’t the only chain caught up in the investigation. Individual Applebee’s and Ruby Tuesday locations are on the list as well. Still, Friday’s is the only chain with multiple locations raided by authorities.

According to The Star-Ledger, the investigation “began as a result of complaints, confidential informants, and new technology used to test liquor covertly purchased at the establishments by detectives.”

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