You are here

All On-Premises Alcohol Sales & Consumption Suspended Effective Today at 4pm

March 19, 2020

The DC Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board adopted an emergency rulemaking prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption starting Thursday, March 19th at 4pm. You cannot serve alcoholic beverages to people while they wait for their food order. This is in effect through the duration of either or both the Mayor’s Public Emergency and Public Health Emergency

Please note for delivery and takeout of alcoholic beverages: they must be provided in sealed container and a beer with a lime in the top does not count as a seal. Establishments should not be giving out straws and doing other things which promote or facilitate the public consumption of alcohol. It is prudent to monitor and otherwise discourage public drinking.

The on-premise prohibition applies to holders of a retailers license Class C or D, including licensed caterers; Class A or B manufacturers holding an on-site sales and consumption permit, festival and temporary license holders and any other license or permit category set forth under Title 25 of the DC Official Code.

Holders of hotel licenses may offer minibars in guest rooms and provide room service.

ABC licensed restaurants and taverns registered with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) to sell beer, wine and spirits in closed containers for carry-out and delivery accompanied by at least one (1) prepared food item may continue to do so. Registration with ABRA is required by law.

Licensees that fail to comply are subject to immediate license suspension and/or revocation.

Licensees are encouraged to remain up to date on the District of Columbia Government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19) by visiting Additional industry specific updates including deadline extensions are available at