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"Laws in Ontario" Liquor / Beer / Wine Tip by stuckie

Liquor / Beer / Wine, Toronto: 10 reviews and 3 photos

The laws concerning alcohol consumption in Toronto follow mostly Ontario laws. The government regulates all sales of beer, wine and liquor, so you can expect prices to be expensive here.

Even local wines and beers will cost you more than one might think. Expect to pay 10-15 CAD dollars for a bottle of wine (even ones made in Ontario) in LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) and 25+ for a bottle in restaurants. Some restaurants let you bring your own wine, but will charge a dispensing fee and per cup. I haven't actually seen any restaurants that do this, but they are out there.

Beer is sold in LCBO and places called the 'The Beer Store'. Again, no alcohol is sold in grocery stores, convenience stores or private enterprises (with the exeption of wine where you can buy at some 'Vincor' outlets known as Wine Rack or some wineries. Also, some northern Ontario towns do sell booze in convenience stores. Check which province you are in, because it varies in Quebec and western provinces. Cases of beer are also exorbitant. A 6 pack of Heinekin is likely to cost 12-13 dollars. In a bar, you can expect to pay 5-6 dollars.

Note in restaurants, you are charged for not only GST/PST (VAT) taxes, but also 10% provincial alcohol tax.

Liquor is the same. Expect to pay 30 dollars for the more common liquors, like rum, vodka and whiskey for 40oz or 750mL bottles. In a bar, 6-7 dollars is the norm. Note, this does not include gratituties, should you tip (usually a dollar a drink).

Hours of beer stores/LCBO/Wine rack stores range, but are open 7 days a week. Usually 9:00pm or 10:00pm are closing hours. Legal consumption of alcohol in restaurants and bars are not allowed before 11:00AM. Open alcohol in public areas is illegal. To avoid fines, you need to drink in LCBO licensed areas only. The legal drinking age in Ontario is 19.

Torontonians do like to drink, but as our government likes to remind us, it's a privilege we have to pay for.


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  • Written Apr 25, 2008
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