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FAQ

What are the hours that alcohol beverages may be sold?

On-Premises Liquor Licensees: Licensees who sell alcohol beverages for consumption on the premises, i.e., taverns, restaurants, brew pubs, may sell alcohol beverages to be consumed on the premises from 7:00 a.m. until 2:00 a.m., 365 days a year.

Off-Premises Liquor Licensees: Licensees who sell alcohol beverages in sealed containers, for consumption off the licensed premises, i.e., liquor stores, drug stores and brew pubs, may sell alcohol beverages in sealed containers from 8:00 a.m. until midnight every day except on Christmas Day.
3.2% Beer Licensees: 3.2% beer may be sold from 5:00 a.m. until midnight, 365 days a year.

There are no state prohibitions concerning the sale or service of alcohol beverages on election days.

Is public consumption of alcohol beverages legal?

Colorado law prohibits public consumption of malt liquor (beer other than 3.2% beer), vinous liquor (wine) and spirituous liquors (bourbon, gin, vodka, etc.) in public, except in a business which is licensed with a Colorado liquor license. Public consumption of 3.2% beer is not prohibited by state law. However, many cities and counties have local laws prohibiting public consumption of 3.2% beer.

Can I bring my own alcohol beverages into a place that has a liquor license?

It is unlawful to bring alcohol beverages into any place that is licensed to sell or serve alcohol beverages, i.e., restaurants, sports stadiums. Similarly, it is unlawful to bring alcohol beverages into an unlicensed public business, i.e., restaurants, for consumption due to the prohibition on public consumption. This can result in sanctions against your license.

How often do I have to renew my liquor or beer license?

Liquor and Beer licenses must be renewed every year. Liquor licenses, unlike many other licenses, are not issued on a calendar year basis. Instead they expire one year from the date of initial license issuance. Your license applications will be mailed to the business address listed on your application (or mailing address, if designated) at least 90 days before your license expires. If you change the mailing address for your state tax information after your liquor license was issued, your liquor or beer license renewals will be mailed to that new address (we share a common computer system). It is your responsibility to ensure your license renewal is filed with your local licensing authority at least 45 days prior to the expiration date. Failure to file your renewal at least 45 days prior to its expiration may result in the license not being renewed.

If your license expires and you notice its expiration within 90 days from the date of actual expiration, you can pay an additional late fee to your local authority and an additional late fee to the state licensing authority so that the license can be renewed. These fees are in addition to your
license fees. If you do not notice that your license has expired within 90 days from the date of its expiration, you must apply for a totally new license. It is unlawful to continue to sell, serve, or distribute alcohol beverages without valid local and state liquor or beer licenses.

Where can I purchase my alcohol beverage inventory?

All Retail liquor and beer licensees may purchase their alcohol beverage inventory from a licensed Colorado Brew pub, Winery or Wholesale licensee. On-premises Licensees licensed to sell alcohol beverages for consumption on the licensed premises may purchase up to $2,000 per calendar year of alcohol beverage inventory from a retail liquor store. All purchases must be evidenced by a receipt or invoice which is to be maintained by the Licensee. (12-47-901(1)(e), 12-47-409, 12-47-411, 12-47-412, 12-47-414, 12-47-415, 12-47-416, 12-47-417, and 12

Can I cater or deliver alcohol beverages?

It is not unlawful to provide a bartending service off a licensed premises for private events. It is unlawful to sell alcohol beverages (as a caterer, bartender or other person) without first being licensed to do so. Since liquor and beer licenses are issued to a specific person at a specific place, there exists no license for the “mobile” catering of alcohol beverages. Those liquor and beer licensees that have a Retail Liquor Store License, Drug store license, or a 3.2% Beer license-combination on/off premises license, may deliver alcohol beverages upon acquiring a delivery permit from the Liquor Enforcement Division. (See 12-47-901(1)(g) and Reg 47-426
-47-418, C.R.S.)

What are the meal/food requirements for the different types of liquor licenses?

LISCENCE TYPE

FOOD REQUIREMENTS

HOTEL AND RESTAURANT LICENSE

Must be a bonafide restaurant 12-47-411, Reg. 47-418 with a menu. At least 25% of the sales (between food and drink) must be from the sale of full meals.

TAVERN LIQUOR LICENSE

Must have light snacks (chips, 12-47-412 pretzels, nuts, etc.) and sandwiches (prepackaged pizzas, burritos, subs, etc.) available for consumption during all business hours.

BEER AND WINE LICENSE

Must have light snacks (chips, 12-47-409 pretzels, nuts, etc.) and sandwiches (prepackaged pizzas, burritos, subs, etc.) available for consumption during all business hours.

RETAIL LIQUOR STORE LICENSE

May not sell food items. UPDATE: Will change due to the passage of SB 16-197. Check back for updated information.

BED AND BREAKFAST PERMIT

No food requirements.

LIQUOR LICENSED DRUGSTORE

No food requirements.

OPTIONAL PREMISES LICENSE

No food requirements.

RETAIL GAMING TAVERN LICENSE

Must have light snacks (chips, 12-47-414 pretzels, nuts, etc.) and sandwiches (prepackaged pizzas, burritos, subs,etc.) available for consumption during all business hours. May contract for these items to be provided from other businesses.

CLUB LICENSE (NON-PROFIT ONLY)

No food requirements.

ARTS LICENSE (NON-PROFIT ONLY)

No food requirements.

RACETRACK LICENSE

No food requirements.

BREW PUB LICENSE

Must be a bonafide restaurant 12-47-415 with a menu. At least 15% of the sales (between food and drink) must be from the sale of full meals.

SPECIAL EVENT PERMITS

Sandwiches or other foods must (non-profit be organizations only) must be available during the (5) event.

Is it illegal to allow the consumption or possession of alcohol beverages to or for a person under the age of 21 years old?

It is unlawful for a licensee to sell, serve, give or allow the consumption or possession of alcohol beverages to or for a person under the age of 21 years. On-premises and 3.2% Beer Licensee, with the exception of Tavern Licensees who do not regular provide full meals, may employ persons who are at least 18 years of age to participate in the sale of alcohol beverages. These persons may participate in the selling, serving or giving of alcohol beverages as long as they are actively supervised by a person who is at least 21 years old (18 for 3.2% Beer). Because of the many public safety issues created by these violations, the Division will always initiate an investigation into violations of this nature.

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