“Today, the Ohio Liquor Control Commission passed an emergency rule to allow establishments with an existing on-premises liquor permit to sell and deliver alcohol, including high-proof liquor in limited quantity, for off-premises consumption,” DeWine wrote in a Twitter post.
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Under the rule, restaurant customers can purchase two prepackaged drinks PER MEAL. “All drinks must be closed and remain closed during transport as per open container law,” DeWine said in a tweet.
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Restaurants lost a powerful source of revenue when all dine-in service was shut down March 15. Many restaurants make a higher profit margin on cocktails, wine and beer than they do on the meals they serve in their dining room. Even those restaurants that are selling carryout and delivery meals have seen revenues plunge without the ability to serve alcohol, although some could sell beer and wine and carryout.
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Local restaurants were quick to welcome the news. Elsa’s Mexican Restaurants, famous for their “Bad Juan” margaritas, posted an image on its Facebook page that touted “Cocktails to Go” with a hashtag of “#JuanWithDeWine.”