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It's Really Hard to Get a Drink at the Sochi Olympics

A snack bar inside Olympic Park, Sochi.
A snack bar inside Olympic Park, Sochi.
Photo: Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images
Hillary Dixler Canavan is Eater's restaurant editor and the author of the publication's debut book, Eater: 100 Essential Restaurant Recipes From the Authority on Where to Eat and Why It Matters (Abrams, September 2023). Her work focuses on dining trends and the people changing the industry — and scouting the next hot restaurant you need to try on Eater's annual Best New Restaurant list.

Not only are the Olympics in Sochi a bit of a nightmare, it is also incredibly hard to find a drink there. The Wall Street Journal reports that due to Russia's alcohol laws, this year's Olympics may well be "the driest Olympics in memory." A law created last year bans the sale of alcohol within sports arenas and stadiums, and a local ordinance created last month bans "alcohol sales within 50 meters of some sports venues." The scarcest commodities in Olympic Park are beer and, ironically, vodka.

There is a small loophole, however. If you happen to be Canadian, you can use a valid passport to open a beer fridge located in the Canadian Olympic House.

· Russia's Ban on Alcohol in Arenas Leaves Drinkers Flat [WSJ]
· All Olympics Coverage on Eater [-E-]