B.C. Serves Up New Options for Liquor Producers

Most customers at a distillery lounge are visiting for the spirits – however, thanks to the latest government liquor update, they will now also have the option to order a beer, cider or glass of wine, if they prefer.

Previously, a winery could only sell glasses of vino it produced onsite, and a brewery could only let you buy a glass of its local beer. This would sometimes mean that some visitors would choose to not purchase anything, if they’d rather have a cider or a mixed drink, for example.
No longer is this the case. Starting today, distilleries, wineries, cideries and breweries with licensed lounges or special event areas can sell liquor they don’t produce, for customers to enjoy during their visit.
“This is a perfect way to allow craft B.C. distilleries, wineries, cideries and breweries to showcase one another, in an effort to cross-promote and support the local B.C. industry,” says Tyler Dyck, president, Craft Distillers Guild of BC.Our distillers have been asked on a daily basis why we can’t serve craft B.C. beer and wine in our lounges – and now we will be able to share the good news with our customers that they have that option.”
By making this change, it also means that, in many cases, customers throwing a wedding or other event at one of these locations won’t have to apply for a separate Special Occasion Licence to reap these benefits either – one less thing to worry about when planning the big day.
This latest change, made as a result of feedback heard during the Liquor Policy Review, will cut red tape for B.C. liquor manufacturers and help them further support and promote their allies in the industry, while offering a new, value-added service for their visitors.
Over the next few months, government will continue consulting with liquor manufacturers about these on-site tasting options and the process for getting a liquor licence, to find areas where further red tape can be cut.
Quick Facts:

  • In order to ensure the focus remains on the manufacturer’s own unique products, sales of other liquor will be capped – only 20% of their sales each quarter can be from alcohol produced off-site.
  • As of July 28, 2015, government has implemented 35 recommendations from the Liquor Policy Review.
  • Government has adopted a phased-in approach to modernizing B.C.’s liquor laws, and will continue consulting with stakeholders and reviewing the changes made, in order to ensure that there are no unintended consequences.

Learn More:
Share your ideas for on-site tasting options and the process for getting a liquor licence until Aug. 21, 2015: www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/lclb/policy/index.htm
Read the B.C. Liquor Policy Review final report: bit.ly/1beqi8i
Learn about the B.C. Liquor Policy Review: engage.gov.bc.ca/liquorpolicyreview