Friday, May 19, 2017

It’s official: New law allows S.C. distilleries to serve up mixed drinks

Just in time for Happy Hour

Posted by Dustin Waters on Fri, May 19, 2017 at 4:30 PM

JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
After receiving a signature Friday from Gov. Henry McMaster, a new law now allows all your favorite local microdistilleries to serve cocktails.

click to enlarge Scott Blackwell is cofounder of High Wire Distilling Co. and president of the South Carolina Craft Distillers Guild - JONATHAN BONCEK FILE PHOTO
  • Jonathan Boncek file photo
  • Scott Blackwell is cofounder of High Wire Distilling Co. and president of the South Carolina Craft Distillers Guild
Coming as welcome relief for Charleston’s distillers, who were previously restricted to serving only small tastings of straight alcohol, the new law allows mixed drinks to be served to customers. Also, the new changes allow up to 3 ounces of alcohol to be served per customer.

City Paper previously wrote about the challenges that the now-former state laws posed to smaller distilleries hoping to liven things up in their tasting rooms. While the Holy City is home to a wide range of quality spirits, distillers faced a bit of a challenge when it came to getting locals in the door to enjoy a drink. Under the new law, distilleries offering tastings are still required to close at 7 p.m. — so no complaints about these establishments becoming bars overnight — but during those hours of operation anyone of age can step inside and sample the products without being left with the piney taste of straight gin in their mouths.

So keep an eye out for any craft cocktails and other offerings at your nearest microdistillery — because things just got a little more exciting on the beverage front.

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