Can a Customer Bring in His or Her Own Liquor/Wine/Beer into a Licensed Restaurant or Bar?

Yes, with the approval of the licensee and as long as the alcohol product is covered under the license in effect and the patron removes the unconsumed alcoholic beverage upon departing the licensed premises.  Liquor cannot be consumed at an establishment licensed for beer and wine only.

This BYOB practice is popular in high end restaurants where diners wish to enjoy wine from their personal collection.  Some restaurants charge a cork fee to serve the customer’s wine.  Since restaurants make a profit on the meal, this can still be profitable for diners who linger and order appetizers and desserts.  This BYOB practice is less viable in bars where the product that brings revenue is the alcohol.  It is used successfully with craft beer clubs or wine clubs at many bars who host regular group meetings and develop a strong following who patronize the bar frequently.

When allowing BYOB, licensees still need to remember to make sure that everyone is of age, that patrons are not being over served and they need to remember that this BYOB is not a method of circumventing section 117 which prohibits unlimited drinks.  (So, for example, if patrons are playing beer pong with beer that does not absolve the licensee of responsibility.  Beer pong has been declared by the Authority to be an unlimited drink offering).  The licensee can still be held liable if these provisions are violated.  The licensee also cannot purchase, agree to purchase or receive alcoholic beverages from unauthorized sources at their establishment.  In other words the licensee cannot purchase, agree to purchase or receive any beer (whether home brewed or commercially available) from a patron and allow the patrons to sample it for free or for a charge.  Home brewed alcohol products cannot be served in any licensed establishment.