Last Updated on September 6, 2023 by Lydia Martin
My idea of relishing the memories of Colorado’s awe-inspiring landscapes was kicking back and savoring a refreshing, crisp, cold beer.
Yet, as the sun begins its descent and the shadows lengthen, I realize one possibility: What if I don’t have enough beer supply for the day?
Until what time can you buy beer in Colorado? I made sure to ask around and never get caught unprepared whenever I wanted to drink beer.
When Does Colorado Sell Beer?
Colorado sells beer from 7 a.m. until 2 a.m. for on-premises consumption, which includes bars and restaurants.
You can also buy beer for off-premise consumption, such as convenience and grocery stores and gas stations, from 8 a.m. until 12 a.m.
“It’s no secret Denver is teeming with breweries from locally grown spots to beer industry names known across the country.” – Erica Buehler, Writer and Editor
On Christmas Day, it is prohibited to sell alcohol in Colorado liquor stores.
What Are The Alcohol Laws In Colorado?
Generally, beer laws in Colorado share some of the basic alcohol laws from different parts of the US. The legal BAC level is 0.08%, and 21 is still the legal drinking age.
A few years ago, licensed liquor stores were the only ones allowed to sell beer. When grocery and convenience stores could finally sell beer, only the 3.2% ABW (alcohol by weight) were allowed until 2019.
From March 2023, grocery and convenience stores could sell beer and wine, but without a liquor license, they could not sell liquor.
Colorado’s new to-go drinks law limits beer orders to two six-packs for each order, available from 7 in the morning until midnight .
Places To Buy Beer & Their Sale Hours
Colorado grocery stores present a convenient option for purchasing beer. Similar to liquor stores, residents and visitors can purchase beer in grocery stores from 8 a.m. to midnight.
This flexibility means you can start your day with a shopping cart full of groceries and a selection of your favorite brews.
Before 2019, you could only buy a 3.2% ABW in convenience and grocery stores, but now full-strength beer is also available.
Bars & Restaurants
Bars and restaurants in Colorado are allowed to sell beer from 7 in the morning until 2 a.m. the following day. This generous window caters to those who wish to enjoy a brew with their brunch or extend their evening celebrations.
According to some locals, the beer, wine, and liquor sales would help bars and restaurants get back on their feet after the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Gas stations with attached convenience stores share the same beer-selling hours as package stores, grocery, and retail liquor stores. From 8 a.m. to midnight, you can buy beer for off-premises consumption.
However, the operating hours of these gas stations may cause them to close earlier than the allowed selling hours of their state. So, you’ll need to check on your local stations to ensure you get to buy beer at the right time.
Breweries & Taprooms
With over 400 established breweries, it is one of the hardest places to miss when you go to Colorado. We explored the Great Divide Brewing, operating from 5:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. at Denver International Airport.
However, state law only allowed breweries to sell alcohol at 7 a.m., so if you get there early, you’d have to wait before you can drink alcohol.
You can also buy beer (or packaged beer) in breweries.
Can You Buy Beer On Sunday In Colorado?
Yes, you can buy beer in Colorado on Sundays. Since we arrived in Denver on a Saturday, I found it fitting to ask about their Sunday alcohol sales.
“In the heart of Colorado, where craft breweries and microdistilleries flourish, the beer culture paints a canvas as diverse as the state’s landscapes.” – Liquor Laboratory
Colorado has a uniform schedule from Mondays to Sundays in most counties. As I’ve found out, before 2008, consumers could not buy beer on Sundays in liquor stores in Colorado.
How early can I buy alcohol in Colorado?
The earliest you can buy alcohol in Colorado is at 7 a.m. When buying beer, you must consider the operating hours of different establishments. For instance, liquor stores can only sell alcohol from 8 a.m.
Can you buy beer at self-checkout in Colorado?
No, you can not buy beer at self-checkout counters in Colorado. Despite the convenience of these inventions, alcoholic beverages have age restrictions in the United States, and store employees are required to verify the customer’s age .
How early can restaurants serve beer in Denver, Colorado?
Restaurants in Denver, Colorado, can serve alcohol (beer) as early as seven in the morning for on-premises consumption. Most places in Colorado share the same alcohol-selling hours, so it’s not as confusing as other states.
On A Final Note
Colorado made it among the top states with the most breweries in the US, letting us have some of the finest crafts in the country.
But you must remember that local beer laws are essential to every journey. First, you must be of legal age to drink beer or consume alcohol. Open containers are not allowed inside motor vehicles in almost all states.
So, check the rules to avoid getting in trouble and fully enjoy the scenic views with a refreshing sip of a Colorado beer.