City of Cortland Bar on Main Street Violates Underage Drinking Law

Hairy Tony’s Pub. (Photo Source: Tim Bennett/Cortland Voice).


The City of Cortland Police Department recently assisted agents of the New York State Liquor Authority in conducting an underage drinking investigation at a bar on Main Street.

A release from city police noted that on Friday at 11 p.m. that “82 individuals” were present in Hairy McTony’s Irish Pub (also known as “Hairy Tony’s Basement”) on 100 Main Street in the city. It is a licensed liquor establishment in the basement of Hairy Tony’s restaurant.

Of the 82 patrons, 70 of them had “falsified identification,” the release states. Out of those 70 patrons, 69 of them were under the age of 21. The release noted one of those patrons was “actually 21,” but still “possessed fraudulent information.”

Tickets were issued to those 70 patrons, the release states. The city police and NYS Liquor Authority spot checked “a number of establishments” in the area, but wanted a “more thorough check” at 100 Main Street.

City detective lieutenant Mike Strangeway said he is unsure if this recent violation will affect Hairy Tony’s and the owners’ other businesses in the long run. 

Hairy Tony’s is owned by Anthony Caruso. Caruso also co-owns A Pizza And More on Main Street in Cortland with a business partner, while he solely owns Dasher’s Pub in Homer.

Caruso & another man pleaded guilty to tax fraud in May of this year after they underreported more than $4 million in taxable sales through their businesses between 2010 and 2015.

Strangeway said as of right now, city police “did not charge any staff members for serving alcohol to minors” Friday night. It is unclear if the patrons who presented falsified identification were local residents or college students, Strangeway added.

The investigation of the violation will be ongoing through the NYS Liquor Authority.



Correction: A correction was made that clarified what businesses Anthony (Tony) Caruso owned in this article. (Update 8:15pm EST on 10/25/21).