The coronavirus pandemic has brought nothing but pain and misery. In many jurisdictions, the laws have only gotten more stringent, which has been debilitating to small businesses. One of the rare occasions where laws have become laxer during the coronavirus pandemic is in Kentucky, where for the first time in history, people across the United States will be allowed to purchase prized Kentucky whiskey and bourbon online. What took so long?
On April 7, 2020, Kentucky established new rules that allowed the direct-to-consumer (DtC) shipping of alcoholic beverages, which meant Bluegrass State distillers could sell their liquid gold online. Finally, on December 14, Kentucky legislators approved HB 415, allowing the online sale of alcohol across this great country, which includes beer, wine, and most importantly, signature spirits such as bourbon whiskey. I’m going to be seeing a lot more of my UPS driver
“Once an applicant receives their approved license and completes any other required registration with the state’s Department of Revenue, they may begin selling and shipping alcoholic beverages directly to Kentucky residents,” according to Sovos.
This is the first time ever that glorious Kentucky spirits were available for sale online, which is a big deal since bourbon can only be legally labeled as such in Kentucky. We’re talking about iconic whiskey heavyweights such as Jim Beam, Angel’s Envy, Wild Turkey, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester, Four Roses, Elijah Craig, Evan Williams, Buffalo Trace, Bulleit, and Maker’s Mark.
The first purchase made under HB 415 was made by Republican Kentucky State Representative Adam Koenig, who was one of the bill’s co-sponsors, as reported by Paste Magazine.
“I am honored to be able to place the first order,” Koenig said in a prepared statement. “Hitting ‘complete purchase’ symbolized so much more than buying a great bottle of bourbon. For Kentucky citizens, it means both convenience and expanded options to choose from. It is an extraordinary day for the men and women who work at our distilleries, wineries, and breweries as well as Kentuckians who want a bourbon or glass of wine with dinner. This is bigger than Kentucky. We are now a national model for how to expand opportunities. These changes have been a long time coming but I think it is particularly meaningful that it is implemented now, after so many of these companies have stepped up to manufacture hand sanitizer and other products to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus. They answered the call in a powerful way.”
HB 415 will also empower Kentuckians to have more access to spirits outside the state and will be able to order from states with similar laws.
God bless fewer regulations.