Off-Premises Applications

The ABC’s of New York’s Alcoholic Beverage Law:
Off-Premises Licenses

The New York Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) law requires that any individual or entity involved in the retail sale of alcoholic beverages apply for and maintain a license. A variety of license types exist, each with different terms and benefits suitable for different businesses. Licenses are generally categorized by the location of consumption (on premises v. off premises), the type of alcohol to be sold, and the nature of the establishment. The array of off-premises licenses is discussed below.

Off-Premises Licenses

Off-premises licenses permit the sale of alcoholic beverages as follows:

Drug Store Beer: Beer only license for bona fide pharmacies.

Grocery Store Beer: Beer only license for bona fide groceries. An applicant for this type of license must certify that it will operate a bona fide retail grocery store, and that such establishment will devote not less than 50% of its public floor space exclusively to the display of consumer commodities (other than beer). The applicant must maintain this percentage throughout the life of the license.

Drug Beer/Wine Product: Provides for the sale of beer and wine coolers by bona fide pharmacies.

Grocery Beer/Wine Product: Provides for the sale of beer and wine coolers by bona fide groceries.

Liquor Store License: This license permits the sale of liquor and wine for off premises consumption.

Wine Store: License to sell wine only (not liquor or beer) for off-premises consumption, under the same basic conditions as a Liquor Store.

Supplemental Restaurant Brewer: Allows a restaurant brewer to sell for off-premises, wholesale, and outdoor gatherings, up to 250 barrels of beer a year.

On-Premises Licenses With Opportunity to Sell for Consumption Off-Premises

Some on-premises licenses provide licensees with the opportunity to offer take away alcoholic beverages to customers without violating their liquor license. These license types include:

Eating Place Beer: This is an on-premises license BUT beer may also be sold for off-premises consumption. Hotel Liquor: Allows consumption of all types of alcoholic beverages (liquor, wine and beer) on the premises, including room service. Allows for consumption off the premises, sale of beer only (not liquor or wine). Hotel Liquor license holders may apply for a "Hotel Off-Premises" (HOP) permit to sell liquors and wines for off-premises consumption so long as there no liquor store in an eight-mile radius. On-Premises Liquor: This is a full, standard “bar” license. However, beer (not liquor and wine) may be sold for off-premises consumption.

The Off-Premises License Application

Securing a retail license for the sale of alcoholic beverages in New York requires the submission of a lengthy, comprehensive application. Defects in the application can cause drawn-out delays or even denial of the application. Utilizing an experienced liquor licensing attorney can save you time and expedite the application process.

The following are disqualifications to holding an alcoholic beverage retail license under the A.B.C. Law:

✔ Applicant is not a United States citizen, lawful permanent resident, or a national of a country having a reciprocal trade agreement with the United States.
✔ Applicant does not meet the age requirement, pursuant to which applicant must be 21 or older.
✔ Applicant is convicted of any felony (unless he or she has a Certificate of Relief from Civil Disabilities), promoting or permitting prostitution, or the sale of liquor without an alcoholic beverage license.
✔ Applicant is a police officer.
✔ Applicant holds an interest in a wholesale license.

To schedule an initial consultation regarding your retail alcoholic beverage license application, please contact us through our Online Contact Form , by email: , or by phone: (212) 835-6768 or (609) 480-3080.