If you always felt like it was tougher to get drunk in Utah than anywhere else, you were not just imagining things. For the past 86 years, Utah has prohibited the sale of any beer containing more than 3.2 percent alcohol at grocery and convenience stores. That regulation will soon come to an end — and just in time for next year’s ski season.
Thanks to a new bill signed by Governor Gary Herbert, retailers in Utah will be allowed to sell beer containing up to 4 percent alcohol by weight, starting on November 1, 2019. The new law also applies to draft beers at restaurants and bars. Although stronger beers are available at state-controlled liquor stores, those stores are scarce, and are currently one of the only places in Utah where you can buy beer above 3.2 percent.
This might be an important benchmark for the relaxing of more beer rules in the future, but for now, it’s not getting any higher than 4 percent. Republican Senator Jerry Stevenson had originally proposed raising the limit to 4.8 percent.