Happy hour ads now allowed in Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – Before Former Governor Bob McDonnell packed up his office, his administration approved some regulation changes from the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control — and one has to do with happy hour.

Effective January 29, restaurants will be allowed to advertise happy hour and the time spans of their drink specials in any media outlet, social, print or broadcast, according to Linda Phelps with the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC).

Up until now, Virginia restaurants could only advertise happy hour inside their own restaurant or on a 17-by-22-inch sign on the outside of the restaurant. Now, only happy hour prices and specials will be restricted.

Another change, Phelps said, is that gourmet shops and restaurants with on- and off-premises licenses will be allowed to sell closed containers of wine, beer or cider for take out. That change will begin on January 15.

As of February 26, businesses with ABC mixed-beverage licenses will also be allowed to steep fruit, herbs, vegetables or other ingredients into distilled spirits to create a distinctly flavored drink.

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