I mostly write about the history of beverages in this blog, but I thought I’d pass this along because the liquor laws in Oklahoma are figuratively Medieval. Maybe that will change in the near future.
The Oklahoma Legislature brought the state closer to the 21st century with the passage of two bills on April 15. SB424 and SB383 will head to conferences for the development of the specific details. If these bills actually make it into law, Oklahoma will make some rather large strides for the sake of beer aficionados. SB424 would allow breweries to sell their own beer on the premises. SB383 would get rid of the old two-beer system that has been on the books for decades. Any beer that is more than 3.2% by weight or 4% ABV must be sold in a liquor store and it must be sold warm. No chilled beer in liquor stores! SB383 would rid the state of the alcohol level distinction and would allow liquor stores to chill their beer. Craft brewers see this as a good thing because it will tend to extend the product lines if they can maintain their beer at the cooler temperatures. Also, currently, some fairly well-known craft breweries do not market to Oklahoma due to this system. That may change if the laws make it to final passage.
Time will tell whether these two bills will make it out of conference relatively unscathed. Stay tuned!