Cocktails to-go to become permanent fixture in Florida


Cocktails to-go will now be a permanent thing in Florida after the FL Legislature passed SB148. The bill now heads to the Senate for concurrence before heading to Governor Ron DeSantis for his signature. Once signed, the bill would become effective July 1, 2021.

The featured image comes courtesy of 7th & Grove and Kuba Cocina; the local business began bottling their own cocktails at the outset of the pandemic, and have continued the service.

The bill’s ultimate goal is to increase consumer convenience and supporting hospitality businesses devastated by COVID-19.

Drinks can’t be bigger than 32 ounces, and food must be included as part of the to-go order.

Supporting small businesses

“The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated Florida’s hospitality businesses, and it will take years for them to fully recover,” said Jay Hibbard, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States Senior Vice President of State Government Relations.

“Cocktails to-go has already proven to be a vital part of their survival during COVID-19 and will only provide increased stability in the months and years to come. Hospitality businesses are desperate for a sustained source of revenue, and cocktails to-go provide a critical lifeline. We thank the legislature for passing this measure and encourage Governor DeSantis to sign this bill and make cocktails to-go permanent in support of Florida’s hospitality businesses.”

Adapting to difficult times 

The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation issued an emergency order allowing restaurants to sell beverage alcohol with to-go food orders in early 2020, and Governor DeSantis expressed his support for making the change permanent at a news conference in September 2020.

Have you enjoyed cocktails to-go in Tampa? Let us know in the comments.

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Written by Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan is the Editor of thatssotampa.com. Follow him on Twitter @harlanyoungII and Instagram @harlanyoung. Send tips and potential stories to info@thatssotampa.com.