The new Ohio law that allows production breweries to open tasting rooms without paying for a second, costly license goes into effect Thursday. The law is expected to increase beer tourism in the state, as many smaller breweries start selling beer at their locations. The law also will allow more micro-distilleries in Ohio.
State Department of Commerce Director David Goodman and Division of Liquor Control Superintendent Bruce Stevenson have scheduled a news conference at 10:30 a.m. Thursday to present the first micro-distillery permit to Watershed Distillery in Clinton Township. Eric Bean, the owner and brewmaster at the Columbus Brewing Co., also will attend.
Previously, brewers were required to buy a $3,906 brewing license and then obtain another $3,906 license if they wanted to open a tasting room. Brewers complained for years about the setup, calling it unfair since wineries don't have to buy a second license. To check out the new law, which involves several other liquor changes, click here.