Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }
Coronavirus information
Coronavirus information
The Zero Canada Project provides resources to help you make the most of staying home.
Visit the hub

Looking to enhance customer service and increase profitability, Canadian restaurants have long asked for the ability to offer customers wine and beer with their take-away and delivery orders. That wish was granted when numerous provincial governments temporarily changed liquor laws to help bars and restaurants stay afloat and keep staff employed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instead of letting their pricey liquor inventories languish during the enforced lockdown, licensed venues offering takeout and delivery of food can sell bottles to increase revenues and free up cash flow.

Restaurateurs terrified of losing their livelihoods are turning to takeout, going to work despite the risks

These new regulations were introduced in British Columbia, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and Quebec, with specific ordinances varying between jurisdictions. For instance, a purchase of food isn’t mandatory in Alberta, while Nova Scotia requires that the alcohol cost isn’t more than three times the value of the food ordered.

Story continues below advertisement

Sales are typically restricted to sealed, unopened bottles of beer, wine and spirits as part of a food order for takeout or delivery to a residential address. Sobriety and identification checks are required upon delivery.

A quick scan of social media accounts suggests consumers and restaurants have been quick to embrace the opportunity. British Columbia’s restaurant trade has created an invaluable resource, breakingbreadnow.com, to share what various operations are offering to consumers at this time. Savvy wine lovers see this as a chance to try – or acquire for their cellar – rare bottles that are only usually sold to restaurants.

Some restaurants are looking to offer their clientele a taste of their full-service experience by preparing set menus with suggested wine pairings to match. Others are staying just inside the spirit of the law by advertising selections from their craft beer and wine lists with the addition of a bag of potato chips.

Pricing regulations vary. Some provinces require that the pricing be consistent with the cost on the wine list. Other regions leave it to discretion of the restaurant, which has encouraged some to institute “happy hour” prices for home delivery accounts.

In any instance, you’re paying a premium over the cost of purchasing at a liquor store for the convenience and service. There are other options available to consumers shopping for alcohol; this just adds more choice and, perhaps most importantly, the chance to support businesses that are seriously struggling to make ends meet in these uncertain times.

E-mail your wine and spirits questions to The Globe. Look for answers to select questions to appear in the Good Taste newsletter and on The Globe and Mail website.

Plan your weekend with our Good Taste newsletter, offering wine advice and reviews, recipes, restaurant news and more. Sign up today.

In the interests of public health and safety, our coronavirus news articles are free for anyone to access. However, The Globe depends on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe to globeandmail.com. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.

Your subscription helps The Globe and Mail provide readers with critical news at a critical time. Thank you for your continued support. We also hope you will share important coronavirus news articles with your friends and family. In the interest of public health and safety, all our coronavirus news articles are free for anyone to access.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies