D.C. bill would let breweries serve outside

WASHINGTON – Local beer and spirits makers are hoping to take it outside.

A bill introduced Tuesday in the D.C. Council would give breweries and distilleries some fresh air and larger tabs.

Under the plan, put forward by Kenyan McDuffie (Ward 5), the drink makers could apply for permits to serve outside as sidewalk cafes or summer gardens.

“I’m most excited about the experience,” says Justin Cox, founder and CEO of Atlas Brew Works. “Having that be outside would be a wonderful boon for our business.”

The District does allow beer gardens and outdoor seating at restaurants. This legislation would extend that privilege to businesses who actually make the drinks.

At present, tastings and sales are conducted inside their facilities.

“As the craft brewing and craft distilling scene is just burgeoning in the city, the regulations are not keeping up,” says Cox, who hopes to start serving outside by the fall.

“I think this was just an issue that no one was really aware existed,” he says.

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