TGI Fridays Raided for Alleged Liquor Scam

State authorities seized various alcoholic beverage inventory and records on Wednesday morning from 29 bars and restaurants across New Jersey.

State authorities raided 29 bars and restaurants Wednesday morning, including Springfield's TGI Fridays, on claims they have been ripping off customers by serving cheaper alcohol as top-shelf.

The year-long investigation, named 'Operation Swill,' revealed the 29 establishments allegedly filled premium brand bottles with non-premium alcohol to increase their profits, according to a release from Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

The ABC launched its investigation after receiving citizen complaints, confidential informants and new technology used to test samples taken covertly from the licensed establishments by state detectives.

Various alcoholic beverage inventory and records were seized on Wednesday from bars and restaurants. 

The establishments target in the investigation were:

  • Railroad Café, East Rutherford
  • The Brick House, Wycoff
  • Sunset Tavern, Burlington
  • Graziano’s Ristorante, Chesilhurst
  • Villari’s Lakeside, Gloucester Township
  • Yesterdays, Marmora
  • TGI Fridays, West Orange
  • Italian Affair, Glassboro
  • Bells Tavern Lambertville
  • TGI Fridays, East Windsor
  • Brunswick Grove, East Brunswick
  • TGI Fridays, Old Bridge
  • TGI Fridays, North Brunswick
  • TGI Fridays, Piscataway
  • TGI Fridays, Freehold
  • TGI Fridays, Marlboro
  • TGI Fridays, Hazlet
  • Murray’s, Dover
  • TGI Fridays, East Hanover
  • Sona Thirteen, Morristown
  • Blackthorn Restaurant, Parsippany
  • Ruby Tuesday, Bridgewater
  • TGI Fridays, Linden
  • Café 34, Matawan
  • Applebee’s, Kearny
  • Cucina Calandara, Fairfield
  • TGI Fridays, Woodridge
  • TGI Fridays, Springfield
  • TGI Fridays, Clifton

More information will be released Thursday by state authorities at a press conference in at 11 a.m. in Trenton.

Allen S Yanow May 23, 2013 at 01:33 PM
Haha Peter! I actually live out of state now, but I used to eat at CB's on RT 22. Springfield and the one in milburn for wed night wing night. Great Food!
Bob Groder May 23, 2013 at 01:40 PM
I saw some of the problems there on Friday & Saturday nights. I would drive by there and often see police cars with lights flashing. I went in once and I felt very cramped at the bar no place to move and the crowd was kind of rude & crude. I also am a life long Springfield resident Office Farva. In fact my late dad was on the planning board and I am on a volunteer committee called the revenue sharing for union county which helps secure grant money for springfield and other towns in the county. I love my town.
Bob Groder May 23, 2013 at 01:42 PM
It would be the 2nd gm to be fired. a former manager there his name was rory and he was a pompass ass who played games with our checks all because we used a coupon. then he refused to take off things that were legit on the check and I could see him laughing from across the room. I turned him in and he got fired eventually im sure because many customers complained. I don't know who is the GM now but I honestly hope the place goes out of business. that type of alleged crooked behavior has no place in springfield which is a nice quiet town.
Nina May 24, 2013 at 03:07 AM
I knew it! We went to the Applebee's in Kearny, and our drinks were so watered down that we asked for more liquor to be added to it, they gladly did it while charging twice per drink, shame on them!
Richard Nibbler May 24, 2013 at 01:39 PM
Cafe 34 charges $5, $6 & $7 for a drink & gives you $2 worth of booze. The owner FAT TONY is a fake, phony , fraud. I`ll never go in there again.


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