Virginians can still order to-go cocktails for at least another year

During the COVID lockdown, many Virginians gained a new reason to get tacos-to-go on the regular: delicious bartender-made margaritas that they could drink from the comfort of their own couch.

It was thanks to an easing of Virginia’s liquor laws to help struggling bars and restaurants sell drinks and keep people employed during the pandemic.

And while pandemic restrictions have been eased, one thing will remain the same: To-go cocktails from restaurants and bars will continue for at least one more year in Old Dominion.

The state law allowing take-home mixed drinks — passed during the pandemic — was set to expire with the pandemic state of emergency ending on Wednesday. But a bill extending it overwhelmingly passed the state legislature and became law with Gov. Ralph Northam’s signature.

The new law sunsets on July 1, 2022, unless it is extended. During that time, the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority will study the new practice and how it impacts public safety.

A similar bill will also continue to allow restaurants to pack up beer and wine for people to take home. That law is set to sunset at the beginning of 2022.

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Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

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