TITLE XIII
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES

CHAPTER 178
LIQUOR LICENSES AND FEES

Section 178:21

    178:21 On-Premises Beverage and Liquor Licenses. –
I. (a) The commission may issue a license to any of the types of businesses specified in paragraph II of this section in any town which has voted to accept the provisions of RSA 663:5, I(b), (c), and (d). The license shall entitle the licensee to serve beverages or specialty beverages containing at least 1/2 percent and not more than 8 percent alcohol by volume at 60 degrees Fahrenheit by the glass or other suitable container and by the bottle with the cork or cap removed; liquor containing more than 6 percent alcohol by volume at 60 degrees Fahrenheit, by the glass or other suitable container; and wines, by the glass, by the bottle with the cork or cap removed; or other suitable container, under rules adopted by the commission.
(b) No beverage, specialty beverage, or liquor shall be consumed on the premises except that which is sold by the licensee.
(c) No beverage, specialty beverage, or liquor shall be removed from the licensed premises by patrons, except as provided by RSA 179:27-a.
II. The commission may authorize establishments, as they are defined in RSA 175:1, having full service restaurants to sell beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor at such time as food is available.
(a)(1) Licenses for Full Service Restaurants. The commission may issue a license to any full service restaurant. Such license shall entitle the licensee to sell beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor at tables in the approved dining rooms of the restaurant with or without meals when the restaurant kitchen is in operation and meals are being actively promoted and served in that dining room. The dining room shall not, however, be used as a substitute for lounge operations. Licenses shall be granted only to restaurants approved by the commission and which show the commission on forms, filed with the license application, covering the 12 most recent calendar months prior to filing, that at least 50 percent of the gross sales of any such licensee is in food. Restaurants with annual food sales of at least $75,000 shall be exempt from the 50 percent requirement. The commission shall at least annually review each license, and application for renewal, on the conditions stated in this paragraph.
(2) The dining room shall be open for business at least 5 days a week for evening meals, unless the commission has granted an exemption.
(3) Private groups contracting for function rooms may also be served beverages and liquor without food.
(4) Notwithstanding the fact that the towns of Newington, New Hampton, and Landaff have voted or vote in any referendum to prohibit the sale of liquor and beverages, a license to sell beverages or specialty beverages by the glass or other suitable container or by the bottle with cap removed; wines or fortified wines by the bottle with cap removed; wines or fortified wines by the bottle, if the cork is drawn, or liquor by the glass or the suitable container to customers with meals at tables only, may be issued to any full service restaurant in the towns of Newington, New Hampton, and Landaff, but only if the restaurant is open and does business at least 10 months of every calendar year and if said restaurant shall meet all other requirements of this section.
(5) Except as provided in this paragraph, no beverages, specialty beverages, or liquor shall be consumed in the licensed areas except those that are sold by the licensee. With the permission of the commission, a licensee may charge a fee for consumption of privately owned table wine stored on the premises and consumed with the purchase of a full-course meal.
(b)(1) Hotel Full Service Restaurant. The commission may issue a license to any hotel in any town. Notwithstanding the fact that the town where the hotel is located has voted not to approve the sale of beverages and specialty beverages in said town, the license issued to a hotel shall entitle the licensee to:
(A) Sell beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor by the glass or other suitable container and wine by the bottle, if the cork is drawn, or by other suitable container to guests in the dining room or in the rooms of guests.
(B) Sell beverages, specialty beverages, liquor, and wine by the bottle which shall be delivered to the rooms of guests, provided that such sales are not made below the cost of such beverages and liquor.
(C) Include a specified quantity of complimentary beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor as part of a contract for the hosting of a convention or offer a specified quantity of complimentary beverages, specialty beverages, or liquor in soliciting such conventions. As used in this paragraph "convention" means an assembly of persons participating in a business, political, professional, or other organizational gathering. Notwithstanding RSA 175:4 or any rules adopted under that section, hotels may advertise and offer package deals to resident guests, which include complimentary drinks, provided such offers shall be limited to persons of legal drinking age.
(D) Sell beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor in bottles or containers not exceeding one liter capacity, which shall be stored under lock and key in a cabinet or miniature refrigerated bar in hotel rooms and which shall be available only to hotel room guests who are of legal drinking age.
(2) The dining room shall be open for business at least 5 days a week for evening meals, unless the commission has granted an exception.
(3) Hotels may serve beverages, specialty beverages, and liquor in the dining room without meals provided the hotel kitchen is in operation and meals are being actively promoted and served in the dining room. The dining room may not be used as a substitute for lounge operations.
(c) Bed and Breakfasts. The commission may issue a license to any bed and breakfast which has at least 4 rentable rooms and a dining area capable of seating the total number of registered guests and shall entitle the licensee to:
(1) Sell liquor, beverages, and specialty beverages to registered guests in any approved area or in the rooms of guests.
(2) Sell liquor, beverages, and specialty beverages by the bottle which shall be delivered to the rooms of registered guests, provided that the charge for such liquor and beverages is not below cost.
(d) Dining Cars. The commission may issue a license to any railroad or car corporation, or designee, operating any dining cars in which food is served within this state, authorizing the holder of the license to sell in such cars liquor, beverages, and specialty beverages to be consumed in such cars. Such license shall be good throughout the state in both license and non-license territory, and only one such license shall be required for all cars operated in the state by the same owner.
(e) Vessels. The commission may issue a special license to the owner or operator of a passenger vessel operating out of any port of the state. Such license shall allow the sale of liquor with food or beverages or specialty beverages in any area of the vessel approved by the commission.

Source. 2003, 231:13. 2013, 23:2, eff. July 15, 2013. 2020, 37:140, eff. July 29, 2020.