Recent Changes to the New York Liquor Laws

Not for Profit Organizations (such as Fire Departments, Veteran’s organizations, and fraternal organizations) hosting games of chance like BINGO can now permit consumption of beer, wine, cider and mead (but not distilled spirits) during fundraisers without a full tavern license thanks to a new law signed by Gov. Cuomo that takes effect in February 2020.

Governor Cuomo signed a law to allow businesses with a farm distillery license to contract with a member of the public to produce a custom liquor for that individual’s consumption. There are limitations such as the product can only be used for personal consumption and not for resale, and the label must clearly indicate that it is not for resale. The customer can assist in the production of the spirits as long an employee or agent of the distillery is present and the spirits must be distilled from not less than 75% fruit or grain grown in New York. The distillery must obtain label approval for the product and pay all excise taxes prior to delivering the final product to the customer.