'Cheers, New York' say Gov. Hochul in call for making to-go cocktails permanent

The governor addressed the matter during her first state of the state address to the Albany legislature
New York Governor Kathy Hochul speaks to the media during her swearing in ceremony at the New York State Capitol in Albany, New York on August 24, 2021.

January 5, 2022 2:14pm

Updated: January 5, 2022 3:59pm

During her first State-of-the-State address on Wednesday, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul called for the permanent allowance of to-go cocktails in the state.

The idea would make permanent a concept that was put into place as a temporary measure during the early days of the pandemic when restaurants and bars became take-out only. If taken up, the proposal will be put to a vote by the Democrat-controlled state legislature.

"We're going to do something bars and restaurants have been asking for, to once again allow the sale of to-go drinks, a critical revenue stream during the lean times last year," Hochul, a Democrat, told legislators in Albany. "Cheers, New York."

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, 15 states and the District of Columbia have made permanent the ability of bars and restaurants to sell to-go cocktails. Many businesses have called the advent of the policy a critical revenue stream as the hospitality industry continues to endure challenging times.

There had, at one point, been discussions occurring in the New York capital of Albany about the possibility of making to-go cocktails a permanent fixture in the state, but those talks fell apart following numerous intra-industry disagreements.