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elfin

Tennesse Blue Laws-what to know before you go?

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We are taking a weekend trip to Nashville from Chicago. Husband is a beer guy and I drink bourbon and sour mash. Should we stock up on beer enroute (for the hotel room) or can you buy beer in the area? The same goes for bourbon. I do not have time for a distillery tour and wondered where I can pick up some nice small batch bourbons enroute. I am a bit confused as to which counties are dry and the availablity of alcohol. What about drinking in restaurants? We are targeting 'meat and three' types of places. Any explantation would be most helpful. Thanks.

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Nashville is not dry. The main difference is that beer is sold in groceries and markets while wine and booze are in package stores or wine shops. The Alchemist (Toby) from The Violet Hour in Wicker Park is involved with the Patterson House in Nashville. They are 2 great places for a cocktail

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The Violet Hour is a big time deal here is Chicago-it is the 'it' place to go for cocktails setting the standard. Glad you have a one in Nashville.

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I'm still not completely up to speed on Tennessee liquor laws, despite having moved here over three years ago, but this is my understanding.

Few counties in Tennessee are still dry (prohibiting the sale of alcohol), with Moore County, the location of Jack Daniels distillery, being a notable exception. Alcohol is very highly regulated and very highly taxed here, so don't be surprised at the prices.

Wine/liquor stores can sell only wine, liquor, and high-alcohol beers, and they are the only places wine, liquor, and high-alcohol beers can be purchased at retail. They cannot sell anything other than wine, liquor, and high-alcohol beers, so if you need a corkscrew, glasses, nibbles, or other accessories, you have to buy them somewhere else. Beer can be sold in grocery stores, convenience stores, separate beer stores right next door to some wine/liquor stores, or pretty much anywhere.

That said, we do have blue laws that prohibit the sale of alcohol to some extent on Sundays. No alcohol at all can be sold before 10 AM on Sundays, not in a restaurant and not in a retail store.

Wine, high-alcohol beers, and liquor can only be sold in restaurants on Sundays. State law requires all liquor/wine stores -- which are the only stores that can sell wine, liquor, and high-alcohol beers for off-premises consumption -- to be closed on Sundays and most holidays.

Beer can be purchased in a store after 10 AM on Sundays (or in a restaurant).

So, if you're coming to Nashville on a Friday or Saturday, you'll have to make one shopping stop to buy beer for your hotel room (most grocery stores carry beer), and a different stop to buy whisky or bourbon (must be a liquor/wine store which cannot sell regular beer).

I can't think of any meat and threes that have alcohol licenses. Perhaps someone else will chime in on that. I suspect that since Loveless has gone so touristy, they might have an alcohol license, but I wouldn't be surprised if none of the others have alcohol licenses.

Several meat and threes are closed on weekends, so be sure to verify the opening days for the particular ones you want to visit.

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