Shake It Up

Now Bars, Restaurants Can Sell You a Pre-Mixed Cocktail To-Go

A new waiver allows establishments to get a little more creative.

By Timothy Malcolm June 29, 2020

Yes, you can legally get that to-go margarita now.

On Friday Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order closing bars statewide for drink-in service. Then, on Saturday afternoon, Abbott made a move that allows those establishments to sell drinks to-go.

According to a new waiver, restaurants and bars with a Mixed Beverage Permit issued by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and permanent on-site food service can sell distilled spirits that they mix and seal themselves. What that means is a bar can legally make you a margarita, martini, or whatever cocktail, put it in a container and sell it to you.

This is a change from a previous waiver that allowed bars to only sell drinks by the kit, or in other words drinks that the consumer had to mix themselves.

“Operating during this pandemic has proved an incredible challenge for all segments of the alcoholic beverage industry,” said TABC Executive Director Bentley Nettles in a release. “Opening up the ability for these businesses to sell mixed drinks to go will help ease the burden for many of these struggling businesses.”

While nothing comes close to serving a regular stream of customers on premises, this latest move at least gives bars an opportunity to remain somewhat creative during this stage of the COVID-19 pandemic. For the consumer, a word of advice: Keep the container in your trunk and enjoy at home.

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