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Bar closures in 5 states


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Been waiting for someone else to start this, as it's a bit alarmist, but no one has, so...  We're in California, and we got hit with a huge punch to the gut yesterday. Most of our sales are through a tasting room, bottle sales and cocktails. I'm sure even people with more of a distribution business model are also very concerned, with many bars and restaurants closing.

We're closed the next few days regardless, so we have some time to figure out a game plan.

Probably just do bottle sales with reduced hours, and additional precautions. Curious what other people are doing. Are you worried? is this a short disruption, or a real game-changer?

The ADI news letter also mentioned this being impetus to the politicians to make FET permanent, which could be a silver lining to this mess.

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For PA:


PLCB via esp1.co 

6:09 PM (3 hours ago)

to me

Images are not displayed. Display images below - Always display images from ra-lblicensing@pa.gov

March 16, 2020


As business operations across Pennsylvania are impacted by efforts to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the PLCB is instituting limited special allowances for licensees.

Given Governor Wolf’s and public health officials’ recent advice that all non-essential retailers and bars and restaurants across Pennsylvania close for at least the next two weeks, the requirement to place a license in safekeeping when a licensee is not operational for 14 days is suspended indefinitely, as are safekeeping deadlines and related penalties.

Given operational disruptions that significantly limit the PLCB’s capacity to timely process renewal and validation applications, the PLCB is extending operating authority for all licensees whose license may expire before normal PLCB operations may resume, and all related penalties will be waived.  However, again, licensees are strongly encouraged to heed public health officials’ request to cease non-essential operations, limit group gatherings and practice social distancing.

In light of the direction that bars and restaurants suspend dine-in service for at least the next two weeks, the PLCB will temporarily adopt lenient measures to enable licensees in those counties to continue selling beer and wine for off-premises consumption.

Retail licensees – including restaurants, bars, hotels, eating places, grocery stores, convenience stores, etc. – may continue selling beer to go, even in the absence of restaurant operations, and those with wine expanded permits may also continue selling wine to go.  There is no change to quantity limits or requirements regarding how sales are to be made.  To be clear:

Quantity limits of 192 ounces of beer and three liters of wine per transaction still apply. 

Sales for wine must still be transacted by RAMP-trained employees according to standard identification requirements at registers previously designated for alcohol sales.

No special provisions for delivery or curbside service are allowed.

Additionally, producers including breweries, wineries and distilleries must indefinitely suspend all dine-in service, but they may continue selling their own products for off-premises consumption.

Clubs and catering clubs must cease all on-premises consumption.

No other special exceptions or allowances are available at this time.

Additionally, Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores across Pennsylvania will close effective Tuesday, March 17 at 9 p.m., per the notice below.  At this point, there is no interruption to service through the Licensee Delivery Program, so long as our distribution centers can continue to support operations.  LDP participants will be notified directly of any changes to the program.

Thank you for your patience and understanding in these unprecedented times, and we wish you, your families and your community health and safety.


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Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced Sunday afternoon that the state government will issue an order closing all bars and restaurants in Ohio beginning at 9pm ET.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Last couple weeks have been very stressful and I definitely am not happy about anything covid 19 related. Thought I would share something positive that might help people stay in business though. This weekend we started offering curbside pick up and contactless home delivery of bottles, to go cocktails (a new temporary allowance in California) in 12oz bottles, and a very, very basic food menu. We got hammered. Our sales were 30% higher than the same week last year. I don't know what next week will bring, but i hope if distilleries can be flexible and creative they stay in business, and retain their staff. People, at least where we live, want to support small businesses, and many aren't affected in the least financially by what's happening so far. 

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Can I get a bottle of rye, vodka and one gin delivered with a complimentary 8 oz bottle of sanitizer?  LOL

In many states you couldn't do something like this because spirit transaction must take place inside the premises. :(  I don't think you could deliver either without seeing/checking an ID to make sure they are 21.  I know deliveries require a signature in my state. I don't know if paying online first would qualify or not but these are the types of things that need to change in state laws moving forward (hard lesson is being learned right now). 

Glad to hear of your success in this!  Surprised you can do this in California!

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Be right there @DrDistillation

We do have to check IDs, I guess I'm being generous by calling it contactless. These are all brand new temporary allowances in CA, hopefully other states will do something similar in conjunction with any mandated closures. We can sell directly to wholesalers, do transactions outside the tasting room, and all sorts of crazy things at the moment.


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