Liquor Sampling Bill: Senate "Yea," House "Nay"

By Stu Johnson, Kentucky Public Radio

Legislation that would allow distilleries to allow off-site samplings of their products won approval in the Kentucky Senate but was defeated in the House Wednesday.

House lawmakers voted 51-43 against a measure that would allow distillers to set up sampling booths at events such as the upcoming World Equestrian Games.

Louisville Representative Tom Riner says he’s concerned that offering free samples of bourbon at some events could send a negative message to children.

”That contributes to their understanding that is a part of the sports culture that this is just a part of it so that increases the consumption of alcohol at a very young age,” he said.

Jay Hibbard with the National Distilled Spirits Council says 43 other states offer such tastings, which would be limited to three one-ounce servings per person.

Senate lawmakers passed their own sampling bill that will be considered by the House before the special session ends this week.