Theodore J. Zeller III

Member | Pennsylvania

Theodore J. Zeller III has extensive experience in liquor law, regulatory licensing, commercial transactions, real estate transactions, and litigation.

Chair of the firm’s Liquor Law Practice Group, Ted was lead counsel in a beer rights case brought against the world’s largest brewers and is now General Counsel to D.G. Yuengling & Son, Inc.

Ted’s lobbying efforts helped change various laws under the Pennsylvania Liquor Code. In 2010, Ted testified before the Senate Law and Justice Committee on behalf of Yuengling Brewery concerning House Bill 291, which addresses the distribution of brewed beverages in Pennsylvania.

In 2011, Ted authored portions of two different bills that were enacted into law.  The bills helped small brewers by allowing more efficient and cost effective brand registration, as well as altered the package laws for brewery licenses.  He also appeared before the House Liquor Committee with the Brewers of Pennsylvania in the Privatization Hearings. Most recently, his efforts helped change brewery regulations to allow for taprooms and he authored the Malt Beverage Tax Excise Credit legislation. Further, he has written extensively about Acts 39 and 166.

Ted counsels clients on the acquisition of liquor licenses and coordinates liquor license transactions with other practice areas, such as real estate, business law, financing, tax law, intellectual property, and litigation.  Known throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, he also represents beer interests on a national level and advises breweries and wholesalers on state regulatory matters involving beer distribution and franchise laws. He regularly prepares distribution agreements for his clients and coordinates state and federal licensing for manufacturing and national distribution.

Ted has tried multiple cases in county and federal court, including jury trials, and hundreds of cases before arbitration panels, district justices, and administrative law judges. He is a member of the Pennsylvania Cider Guild and is General Counsel to the Brewers of Pennsylvania and represents alcohol interests in every category. Ted has helped numerous start-up breweries, wineries, distilleries, and retailers.

Ted was named a 2019 Pennsylvania Trailblazer by The Legal Intelligencer and made a cameo appearance in “Undercover Billionaire,” Episode 1 -2, as himself giving advice on how to build a brewery.

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Blog - Legal Liquor

Planes, Trains, and Shopping Carts: Permissible Vehicles for Transporter-for-Hire Licensees

Higher Prices in Pennsylvania and Liquor Law Reform in New Jersey

Giving Pennsylvanians a Second Chance: Ethics Investigation Spurs PALCB Changes in Limited-Release Lotteries

Play that Funky Music up to 75 Decibels: Pennsylvania Updates Laws Regarding Sound and Music Amplification


PLCB Approves Sales of CBD Products

Pandemic-Driven Amendments to Liquor Code Truly Novel

School’s Back – RAMP Training Returns to the Classroom

Political Winds Knock Out Drinks to Go and Temporary Extensions in Pennsylvania

Restaurant Revitalization Fund: Economic Relief for Restaurants

Make Memorial Day Plans! Pennsylvania COVID Restrictions to Be Lifted

Some Hospitality Restrictions to Be Lifted in Pennsylvania, but Occupancy Restrictions Remain for All

Philly Special Restaurant Reopening Rules

Impacts of COVID-19 Violations on Liquor Licenses in Pennsylvania

USDA Certified Organic Seltzers: One of a Kind?

Pennsylvania’s COVID Christmas Closure 2020

Promising Court Opinions in First Wave of COVID Insurance Loss Claims for Restaurants

New Jersey Restrictions Return for Bars and Restaurants as COVID-19 Cases Increase

Pennsylvania COVID-19 Restaurant Restrictions Remain Fluid

One Step Forward, One Step Back: PA Gov Dances Around COVID Rules for Restaurants

COVID-19 Brings Consumer Convenience to Pennsylvania

New PLCB Guidance on Governor Wolf’s “Meal” Requirement Leaves Much to the Imagination

Pennsylvania Governor Issues Additional Updated Guidance for Hospitality Businesses Conducting In-Person Service (Second Update)

Pennsylvania Governor Issues Updated Guidance for Hospitality Businesses Conducting In-Person Service

Critical Compliance Tips from Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s Guidance for On-Premise Sales During COVID-19 Crisis

Pennsylvania to Permit Outdoor Dining on June 5 in Yellow Phase Counties and Issues Guidance for Dine-In Service for Green Phase Counties on May 29

Governor Wolf Signs Bill to Allow Mixed Drinks To-Go for Restaurant and Hotel Licensees

Pennsylvania Taproom and Restaurant Guide to Reopening

“Governor, Can I Take Your Order?” – Pennsylvania House Votes to Allow Mixed Drinks To-Go but Will Governor Make It Law?

Your State Store Won’t but Your Local Breweries Will

TTB Steps Up Amid Crisis—Postpones Excise Tax Filing and Payment Dates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Temporary Advisory Notice: Breaking Down the Latest Guidance From the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board

Brewery Operations Can Remain Open: A Coronavirus Update

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Shuts Down Special Orders of Wine and Spirits: A Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Grocery and Convenience Stores’ Beer and Wine Sales: A Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Coronavirus Survival Kit for Breweries and Restaurants

Alcoholic Cider and Fermented Fruit Beverages – The Conflict Between Federal and Pennsylvania Law

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Announces Tenth Zombie Restaurant Liquor License Auction

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Tackles Wine Slushie Sales by Restaurant Licensees

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Delays Brewery Renewals for Malt or Brewed Beverage Reporting Errors

TTB Ramping Up Enforcement Through Internet and Social Media Investigations

Breaking News: New Tax on Pennsylvania Brewery Sales Goes into Effect October 1, 2019

Pennsylvania Liquor Law Update: Acts 45, 48, and 57 Make Changes to Cider, Sound, Local Option, Nonalcoholic Malt or Brewed Beverages, and More

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s Ninth Restaurant License Auction: Grocery, Convenience, and Wal-Mart Win Big

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Puts Brakes on Convenience Store Plans

PA Wineries to the PLCB: Is it Legal to Offer Volume Discounts?

PLCB Announces Ninth Restaurant Liquor License Auction

Raise a Glass: Pennsylvania Breweries Avoid Excessive Sales Tax Under New Law

U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down Tennessee Residency Requirements and Potential Pennsylvania Liquor Code Impact

The Aftermath of the Government Shutdown on TTB Processing Times for Breweries, Distilleries and Wineries

How to Prepare Your Brewery for an FDA Inspection

Pa.L.C.B. Announces Eighth Restaurant Liquor License Auction

Pennsylvania New Distributor Packages, Slushies, and Food Health Safety Considerations

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s Seventh Restaurant License Auction: Winners and Losers

Beer and Pizza? Yes. Wine and Pizza? No. Home Delivery of Wine Practically Impossible for Restaurant Licensees Under Liquor Code

Malt Beverage Slushies: New Sales Privilege for Distributors or a Loose Definition of Growler?

Do You Want to Sell a Martini at Your Brewery, Winery, or Distillery in Pennsylvania? The Vermouth and Other Alcoholic Mixers Must be Made in Pennsylvania

Surprise – Your Liquor License Can Be Suspended

Pennsylvania’s Sales Tax Money Grab on Breweries

How Can a Happy Hour Get Better? Unlimited Happy Hours for Pennsylvania Breweries, Distilleries and Wineries

New PA Driver’s Licenses and Photo ID Cards

How Can a Brewery Produce Hard Cider? – Part 2: COLAs, Standards of Fill and Pa.L.C.B. Brand Registration

How Can a Brewery Produce Hard Cider? – Part 1: TTB Permitting

Pa.L.C.B. Issues Guidance on Decorative Bottles in a Licensed Establishment

Pa.L.C.B. Changes Procedure on Brand Registration for Breweries

Pennsylvania’s Malt Beverage Tax Credit to Take Effect in July

Pennsylvania Zombie Liquor License Auction: Keys to Making a Successful Bid

Direct Sales to Consumers Exempt From Beer Franchise Laws?  Pa.L.C.B. Opines on Contract Brewing Arrangement Providing Beer to Couplet

Pa.L.C.B. Opinion Allows Brewery Storage Locations to Sell Wine and Spirits and More

PLCB+ and 2017 License Renewals

Off Premises Catering Permits Updated Under Act 39

Has Pennsylvania’s New Liquor Legislation Made Brew Pub Licenses Obsolete?

Not So Consumer Friendly? Pa.L.C.B. Says No Discount for Breweries, Wineries, and Distilleries When Purchasing Wine or Spirits from the State Stores

House and Senate Pass HB-1196 – More Than Just a Fix-It Bill to Act 39

When the TTB says no but the Pa.L.C.B. says yes: When do you need a COLA for off-premises growler sales?

RAMP Under Act 39 of 2016: Who is Required to Complete Server/Seller Training

The Do’s and Don’ts of Growler Labeling

New Pennsylvania Liquor Code Changes (HB 1690) About Choices

Temporary Alcohol Permit Options in Pennsylvania

See More


Press Coverage, Quotes, and Interviews

  • “Pennsylvania Liquor Law Legal Update,” State College, PA, September 6, 2019
  • “The Brewers of Pennsylvania 4th Annual Mid Atlantic Brewer’s Symposium,” State College, PA, October 12, 2018
  • Webinar, Philadelphia’s office of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), September 21, 2017
  • Liquor and the Law: Dram Shop Liability, Liquor Licensing and DUI,” Northampton County Bar Association of Pennsylvania, 2012 Lunch Lecture Series, March 24, 2012

Ted Zeller Martindale Hubbell Peer Review

Theodore J. Zeller has earned the Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished status. A description of the selection methodology can be found here. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

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