Should You Serve Alcohol or Not?
One of the many questions that face anyone opening a food service business is whether or not to serve alcoholic beverages. If you are having a difficult time making a decision on whether or not to sell alcoholic beverages, you might find it beneficial to look over the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.
When it comes to serving drinks you can find many benefits. One of the biggest benefits is the amount of profit that alcohol sales can bring in. Depending on what drinks you serve, you may see a substantial portion of your profits come from the alcohol sales alone. This can be quite enticing, especially to a business that is starting out and struggling to see a profit. Drinks sell well at competitive prices. The amount you make during regular hours might even allow you to offer discounted prices during off-peak times.
Another benefit to selling alcohol is that you will be able to attract customers that may have gone elsewhere. There are many people who enjoy a good drink with their meal, or those who enjoy drinks after work, if you choose to have alcohol on your menu you can draw in a large segment of this population.
Selling alcohol has its disadvantages as well. You will be required to obtain a liquor license, and depending on where you are located, that could be a lengthy and costly process. The regulations to get a license are quite strict and you must adhere to them long after your license is granted. In some areas, you will need a separate license for each type of alcoholic beverage you sell. There are also some places where licenses are limited and if they have reached the maximum amount of available licenses, then you will have to wait until a license becomes available. All of this can make it difficult to even start the process of serving drinks.
If you start selling alcohol, then you will need more than just the liquor, wine and beer, you must have the proper equipment, supplies and staff to prepare and serve the drinks. The staff must also be trained in making all drinks that you will offer. If they will be serving the drinks, they must be 21 years and older in order to legally serve alcohol. All of this will add some costs to your budget.
When you sell alcohol you will also be required to look at the identification of each customer. You will need to be sure that they are of legal age and that their identification is valid. Failure to do so can result in drastic consequences. If you serve alcohol to somebody who is underage, you could receive fines, lose your license to serve alcohol, and possibly have your business shut down.
In the end, you may find that the profit margin and benefits make the advantages of serving drinks outweigh the disadvantages. If you choose to serve drinks you may want to take the time to make the drinks match the atmosphere of your restaurant. But most importantly, you must serve drinks responsibly. When the health and safety of your customers comes first, then word will spread that you are socially responsible and that's what counts the most and this will add to your overall profit margin