Georgia bill to make to-go cocktails permanent heads to Senate for vote

ATLANTA — A Georgia Senate Committee has passed a bill that will make to-go cocktails from restaurants permanent.

Currently, more than 30 states including Georgia, allow to-go cocktails due to the pandemic.

Bill 236 would allow establishments licensed to sell distilled spirits for consumption on the premises to sell mixed drinks to go in approved, tamper-evident containers.

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Customers would be required to place the container in a locked glove compartment, trunk or behind the last seat of their vehicle if they have no trunk. Cocktail orders must be submitted with a food order.

An official with the Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S. submitted testimony in favor of the bill, highlighting the importance of revenue generated by to-go cocktails as restaurants struggle during the ongoing health crisis.


“The hospitality industry, which represents tens of thousands of jobs in all 159 of Georgia’s counties, has been one of the most heavily impacted during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Jay Hibbard said. “Job losses have been in the thousands, and many long-established restaurants have closed their doors permanently.”

Hibbard said that providing licensed establishments with to-go cocktail privileges will help in what will be a long road to recovery.

The bill is now headed to the Senate floor for a vote.

Lawmakers passed a bill in July 2020 that legalizes home delivery of alcohol from restaurants, grocery stores and liquor stores.

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