Prior to September 29, 2014, a Small Beer Manufacturer (Type 23) liquor licensee could obtain a duplicate license to open a "branch office" forthwith, meaning almost immediately, with the ability to operate as a "tasting room" and fill growlers to-go after 30 days. In addition, there were no limits to the number of these "branch offices" that a licensee could open. Branch offices were a nice quick way for brewers to expand their business and get their craft beer out to other areas of the county and state.
On September 29, 2014 the Governor approved Assembly Bill No. 2010 (AB-2010) which took effect immediately and changed these privileges. With the enactment of AB-2010 the following significant changes were enacted:
1. A licensee has to go through the normal ABC application process to obtain the "tasting room" and growlers to-go privileges which can take months, and may include the imposition of additional conditions on a branch office location.
2. Branch offices are limited to six (6) with no more than two (2) of those six locations being bona fide public eating places. Also, if a Type 23 licensee already has existing branch offices, those count against the limit. In other words, if a licensee already has six (6) branch offices, they are at the limit!
Although, branch offices will still be available for brewers, AB-2010 will clearly slow down and limit brewers ability to establish them.
For any questions or more information regarding Type 23 licenses or other types of liquor licenses please call us at 619-297-0066.