Chicago City Council approves measure allowing to-go cocktails

CHICAGO – A measure passed by the Chicago City Council Wednesday will allow the city’s bars and restaurants to take advantage of a law sponsored by State Senator Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) permitting the sale of cocktails for delivery and curbside pickup. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating to independent bars and restaurants,” Feigenholtz said. “Without new means to help them survive this crisis, some may be forced to close their doors permanently. This law will give these businesses a critical new tool to help them stay afloat.”

Last month, Feigenholtz sponsored a law that would allow Illinois bars and restaurants to sell cocktails or mixed drinks for delivery and curbside pickup, provided that they are sealed in tamper-proof containers and stored in a trunk or other compartment inaccessible to the car’s driver and passengers.

The law also includes provisions to ease regulations and fees on liquor license holders whose business operations have been suspended due to the pandemic, including waiving late filing fees, relaxing liquor license fees and automatically renewing and extending liquor licenses. 

Although the governor signed the measure into law in early June, changes to Chicago’s municipal code were needed to implement it in Chicago.

“Chicago is known for its independent bars and restaurants, and it’s essential that we find ways to help those businesses stay on their feet,” Feigenholtz said. “This new law is going to provide a major boost to bars and restaurants that have had to close or limit operations for months.”

The to-go cocktails law will sunset in June 2021.