MONTICELLO — The council created a new class of liquor license this week that could soon pave the way for a microbrewery locating in town.
City Director of Community Development Callie Jo McFarland said a brewer expressed interest in Monticello about three months ago, but that a Class J liquor license was needed for the business be able to make beer on the premises.
The new license also allows for the package sale of liquor, as well as limited consumption at the facility. The libation area could not be more than 25 percent of the gross square footage of the microbrewery, and customers are limited to three drinks per day on the premises.
"This is intended to prevent it from becoming a bar," said City Superintendent Floyd Allsop.
"They don't really want to have a bar setting," added McFarland. "But they recognize there is a tourism component that can be associated with that, and people might want to taste it first."
The vote to approve changes to the city liquor code, which also drops the special fee for Sunday sales, was approved by a 6-1 vote. Vince Kuetemeyer was the dissenter, saying he had no problem with beer being served with a Class J license, but did not like the idea that wine and higher-alcoholic content products could also be sold and tasted there.