Liquor Control Board selects independent grocery stores for tasting pilot

August 13, 2008

OLYMPIA - The Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) today randomly selected the 15 independently owned grocery stores that will participate in a yearlong pilot program that allows on premise wine and beer tastings in 30 grocery stores across Washington. The pilot runs from Oct. 1, 2008 to Sept. 30, 2009.

In addition to the 15 independently owned stores, 15 stores that are part of four nationally known chains of grocery stores will participate in the pilot. The allocated amount of stores for each chain is approximately proportionate to the number of submissions. The pilot will include seven Safeway stores, five Fred Meyer/QFC stores, two Haggen/Top Foods stores, and one Albertsons store. Store locations will be selected by the participating chains in the coming weeks.

The Legislature directed the pilot (Engrossed Senate Bill 5751) during the 2008 Legislative Session. The WSLCB will provide guidance and oversight for the pilot, and will submit a report including findings, complaints and comments about the pilot to the Legislature on Dec. 1, 2009.

Participating stores
In June 2008, the WSLCB invited Washington grocery stores that hold a grocery store license to send in a letter of interest indicating their desire to participate in the pilot. Participating stores must operate a fully enclosed retail area encompassing at least 9,000 square feet, and the primary activity of the store must be the retail sale of grocery products for off-premises consumption.

The following list of independently owned stores is tentative, pending verification of each store's eligibility.

  • Dave's Market Place, 669 Lincoln Ave. E in Tenino
  • Tacoma Boys, 5602 6th Ave. in Tacoma
  • West Seattle Thriftway, 4201 SW Morgan St. in Seattle
  • Stadium Thriftway, 618 N 1st St. in Tacoma
  • Everett Grocery Outlet, 710 SE Everett Mall Way in Everett
  • Matthew's at Lakemont, 4989 Lakemont Blvd. SE in Bellevue
  • Blaine Cost Cutter No. 489, 1733 H St. No. 100 in Blaine
  • Anacortes Food Pavilion #79, 1519 Commercial Ave. in Anacortes
  • Metropolitan Market, 1618 SW Dash Point Rd. in Federal Way
  • Metropolitan Market, 2420 N. Proctor in Tacoma
  • Lynnwood Grocery Outlet, 19800 44th Ave. W Ste. G in Lynnwood
  • Vashon Thriftway, 9740 SW Bank Rd. in Vashon
  • Denny's Harvest Foods, 215 E SR 902 in Medical Lake
  • Cowiche Harvest Foods, 16850 Summitview Rd. in Cowiche
  • Rosauer's Super Market No. 2, 1808 W 3rd Ave. in Spokane

A final list of all 30 participating stores will be available soon on the WSLCB Web site at

Pilot requirements
Each store may have a total of 12 tastings on premises during the pilot. A store is limited to one tasting a month, and it must conduct a minimum of six tastings over the course of the pilot. Beer and wine samples must be two ounces or less, and customers can have up to a total of four ounces. Store employees must be able to observe all tasting participants in a designated tasting area to ensure that minors and apparently intoxicated persons cannot possess or consume alcohol.

Enforcement activities during tastings
Liquor enforcement officers will attend each store's first tasting. Officers will regularly conduct announced and unannounced visits and compliance checks throughout the pilot to monitor compliance with the pilot's guidelines and ensure all alcohol related state laws and regulations are followed.

The WSLCB will survey participating stores for opinions and suggestions about the pilot. The public can direct comments, questions or concerns about the pilot to the WSLCB via e-mail at The e-mail address will be available starting Thursday, August 14.

For a complete list of requirements for the tasting pilot, please visit



Printer-friendly version