On January 26, 2022, the New York State Liquor Authority issued a Declaratory Ruling regarding the eligibility of New York movie theaters to apply for and obtain on-premises retail licenses for beer and wine service. This is a value-add for theaters, and it allows businesses to provide a new amenity to customers and increase their revenues. The Authority determined that theaters would be eligible for these licenses provided the following:
- They can establish the theater will prepare and serve food;
- The primary source of revenue for the theater will be from the ticket sales and/or snacks; and
- The revenue from the sales of alcoholic beverages (beer and wine only) will be incidental to revenues from tickets and food offerings.
For questions about this ruling, retail licenses in New York or other alcoholic beverage licensing and compliance matters, please contact Adena Santiago or McDermott’s alcohol regulatory and distribution team.