Utah Drinkers Get in Touch With Bartenders
New law knocks down barriers, hands-off policy in restaurants
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 13, 2009 2:02 PM CDT
A diner at a Salt Lake City establishment.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Under a new law that went into effect yesterday, restaurants that sell alcohol no longer need to separate patrons from the people serving them drinks, the Salt Lake Tribune reports. “Not having these barriers is going to save us a lot of time, especially with out-of-state visitors who constantly ask what it is and why it's there,” one owner said of the “Zion curtains,” which are usually glass barriers.

The purpose of the "curtains" was to shield children from the sight of alcoholic drinks being made. Bartenders could not hand anything over the barriers, forcing servers to walk around them. But the legislation also mandates that new establishments selling liquor mix drinks out of sight in a back room, the AP reports. Utah Gov. John Huntsman calls the restriction “a step backward.”