New Haven: Sunday Booze and Beyond

Are you looking for an exciting way to enjoy your Sundays? Look no further, because thanks to a new law passed in 2012, Connecticut's liquor stores are open for business on Sundays! Take advantage of this expanded availability to explore the area's growing palate for good libations, and imagine the possibilities that await. Take a journey through New Haven and Southern Connecticut, and discover something new and delicious!

The Intoxicating Drinks and Changing Attitudes of Southern Connecticut and New Haven

Southern Connecticut and New Haven are home to vibrant communities, exciting cities, beautiful coastline, world-class universities and an abundant array of humanity. Nestled within these sun soaked towns and cities is a rich and varied culture, with plenty of variety for those looking for something to wet their whistle.

It’s no surprise, then, that the area is home to some of the best liquor stores in the entire country, offering an unparalleled selection of craft beers, fine wines, small batch spirits, and all manner of liquors. The sheer variety can be overwhelming, especially to first-time visitors, who may fondly remember the old-fashioned candy stores and groceries of ‘yesterday’, but may be taken aback by the selections in today’s sophisticated bars and liquor stores.

The History of Liquor Stores in Southern Connecticut and New Haven

For more than fifty years liquor stores in the area had a strict schedule that specified when they could open, close and sell liquor products. Many states still remain in this antiquated system, but Connecticut began to move away from it in the early 2000s.

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Before 2008, there were many restrictions on Sunday liquor sales. Sunday sales were allowed in the towns of Broadwater, Easton and Middletown between 12 PM and 8 PM. But that was the only finite exception the state had in place. According to the Hartford Courant, it wasn't until May 2012 that Connecticut liquor stores could legally open on Sundays.

Open Sundays: A New Culture for Liquor Sales

It’s a no-brainer victory, but also a sign of the changes that have come to the state’s growing palate for good libations. Owing to the state's progressive nature, the public's understanding of alcoholic beverages and the fact that the state has become a Mecca for craft beer and craft cider, it only makes sense that Connecticut should be among the forerunners of opening liquor stores on Sundays.

The rules are not without restrictions however. Liquor stores are regulated by the Department of Revenue Services and must follow the Requirements for Sunday and Holiday Alcohol Beverage Sales publication (PT-467). This specifies that no alcoholic beverages will be sold during the hours 7PM to 8AM, nor will they be offered by any off-premise store until 1 PM. Other limitations must be observed, as seen here, such as the prohibition of the online sale or delivery of any alcohol product.

The Benefits of Sunday Liquor Sales

One of the benefits of increased sales hours is that the community can come together more easily. This is owing to the fact that many of the same establishments that serve food and drinks during the week also offer parties and events on the weekends. Sunday sales provide a more convenient way for establishments to stock up on their supplies, while allowing customers ample time to brainstorm the perfect concoctions.

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Additionally, allowing Sunday sales gives the state more access to tax dollars. In the past, liquor stores had to pay taxes on a limited number of days, but now with the new law, it is possible for the stores to pay taxes on all days, thereby increasing their profits and revenues.

Finally, Sunday sales also provide an opportunity for restaurants and bars to give back to their customers through various promotions and discounts. For example, some bars have utilized discounted pricing and offered specials on domestic beers during the “happy hours” that run from 12-4 PM on Sundays. This allow the bar or restaurant to draw in more customers, while building loyalty with the regulars, which ultimately helps their bottom line.

A Wealth of Fun, Food and Drinks

There's something intoxicating about Southern Connecticut, New Haven and its surrounding areas. The cities bustle with energy, and people connect on a level not found elsewhere. Whether they're checking out a local brewery, relaxing at the beach, or simply enjoying a

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