Statement by Distilled Spirits Council Vice President of State Government Relations David Wojnar
“We are thankful Governor Wolf recognizes the need for additional assistance for the hospitality industry during COVID-19 and approved cocktails to-go. This measure will be a valuable economic lifeline that will help Pennsylvania businesses struggling with financial hardships during this pandemic. Unfortunately, the path to recovery will last well beyond the end of this crisis. We continue to work with the legislature to find additional, consumer-friendly solutions to expand access to distilled spirits and help alleviate some of the negative impacts caused by the statewide closures of all spirits stores during COVID-19.”
The law will allow those holding valid restaurant or hotel liquor licenses that lost more than 25 percent of their average monthly total sales, including alcohol sales, as a result of restrictions imposed during COVID-19 to sell mixed drinks to-go in a sealed container no greater than 64 fluid ounces in a single transaction.
With the inclusion of Pennsylvania, 33 states plus the District of Columbia allow restaurants and/or bars to sell cocktails to-go, bottled spirits to-go or both. Eighteen states plus the District of Columbia are allowing restaurants and/or bars to deliver distilled spirits in some form. In addition, 12 states plus the District of Columbia are now permitting curbside pickup of distilled spirits from restaurants and/or bars.
Some states, including Texas and Florida, are considering making these policies permanent.