Molly BeckPatrick Marley
MADISON - A year after the coronavirus pandemic forced customers to avoid drinking and eating in public, bars and restaurants may now start selling wine and cocktails to go.
Gov. Tony Evers on Friday signed a bill that would allow taverns and restaurants to sell wine and mixed drinks in sealed containers for curbside or in-store pickup. The law takes effect Sunday.
The new law gives the hospitality industry a new way to boost sales while the pandemic persists but also comes months after revenue losses were at their worst, just as warmer weather is pushing patios to reopen and as more of Wisconsin becomes vaccinated.
"It's taken awhile to get them to go but we're happy — it's not going to magically save a lot of businesses over the course of the last year but it's an important tool," Scott Stenger, a lobbyist for the Tavern League of Wisconsin, said. "It's the first time that we've gotten good news."