Susan Kelly Burkitt is a member of Nossaman's Corporate Practice Group. As a beverage alcohol and craft beer attorney, her practice focuses on providing compliance guidance for clients licensed by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) and federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) and advises in all areas of sales, production and distribution of wine, beer and distilled spirits.
Ms. Burkitt has considerable experience negotiating and drafting grape purchase agreements, contracts for custom wine services, co-packing of distilled spirits, and contracts with vendors of products used in spirits production (from dry goods to specialty glass) as well as with production equipment manufacturers. In her prior experience as an attorney in New York for Pernod Ricard USA, a producer of premium distilled beverages and wines, Ms. Burkitt worked with brands including Absolut Vodka, Jameson's Irish Whiskey, Seagram's Gin, Malibu Rum, Avión Tequila, Mumm Napa sparkling wines and Jacob's Creek wines.
Following her work at Pernod Ricard USA and in other experience, Ms. Burkitt also advises clients in California and federal employment law compliance including equal opportunity, wage and hour disputes, employee discipline, drug testing, personnel policies, I 9 audits, non-compete and non-disclosure agreements as well as in collective bargaining. Additionally, Ms. Burkitt defends clients in response to state and federal agency inquiries as well as in pre litigation and employment litigation matters.
- Mumm Napa Winery. Ms. Burkitt represented this Pernod Ricard USA sparkling wine producer in creating an arrangement among private parties and local state and federal agencies to allow for a multi-jurisdictional environmental restoration project to go forward on the client's leased vineyard property on Huichica Creek . For this same wine producer, Ms. Burkitt also represented the client in revising its grape purchase agreements with outside grape growers.
- Cuvee M; Mumm Brut Prestige. Ms. Burkitt represented these sparkling wine brands in developing contract terms with a Napa custom wine services company to ready the wine product for bottling and shipping. Services included tirage bottling and riddling.
- Kahlúa. Ms. Burkitt represented this brand in negotiating contract terms with a milk products manufacturer for the formulation, blending, producing and packaging of dairy-based spirits products.
- Seagram's Gin. Ms. Burkitt represented this spirits brand in a dispute with a specialty glass manufacturer regarding quality issues and the re-design and manufacture of bottles for a variety of products.
- Pernod Ricard USA, LLC. Ms. Burkitt represented the bottling and packaging operations of this client in the negotiation and drafting of a variety of contracts for "co-packing" of outside spirits brands (including airline/hotel 50 ml sized bottles).