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How Can I Serve Beer, Wine and Mixed Drinks from my Food Truck in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville or Chattanooga?

Aug 19, 2015

Often celebrated by foodies for creative but cheap eats, food trucks have become grazing ground zero for diners in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville and Chattanooga.  Food trucks have many advantages over bricks and mortar restaurants, with one key exception.

Tennessee liquor laws do not allow a food truck to serve beer, wine and mixed drinks the way that a restaurant or bar does.  We blogged about the topic here.

In Tennessee, liquor licenses are generally issued for a specific building.  Add a patio or expand your restaurant, for example, and you have to get approval from the ABC.

Food trucks are mobile by definition and do not qualify for restaurant liquor licenses.  There is no special liquor license for food trucks.

James Brown and Paliament-Funkadelice bassist Bootsy Collins gets it with Munchies for Your Love

I got the munchies for your love
Your love is kind of sweet, sweet enough to eat
I'm hooked on you chocolate star
I got the munchies for your love

Alcohol at food trucks is a hot topic at national liquor conferences, but state liquor laws are driven largely by liquor industry politics and not consumer demand.  We are not seeing states flocking to adopt food truck liquor licenses.  Tennessee is no exception.

Although we have found ways to license food trucks in certain circumstances, very few food trucks will qualify for beer permits and liquor licenses under Tennessee law.

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