Last Updated on September 6, 2023 by Lydia Martin
Tennessee, known for its rich musical heritage and as the Volunteer State, was the first state to pass a Prohibition law almost 200 years ago.
While Tennessee is best known for its iconic Jack Daniel’s, I’ve also noticed that the state is gradually making a name for itself in the beer industry.
As I explored the best places to have a beer in Tennessee, I didn’t forget to ask around establishments a vital question – what time can you buy beer in Tennessee?
The Best Time To Buy Beer In Tennessee
The best time to buy beer in Tennessee is from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m. in grocery and convenience stores, Monday through Saturday. Then, 8 a.m. until 3 a.m. for bars and restaurants, but Sunday alcohol sales start later at 10 a.m.
“Its bustling capital of Nashville, a city renowned for its significant influence on the nation’s music industry, is quickly developing into a hub for craft beer enthusiasts across the nation.” – Jared Ranahan, Freelance Writer
On the other hand, a retail package store can sell beer from 8 in the morning on Monday through Saturday and 10 in the morning on Sundays. No sale of alcohol beyond the closing time of 11 p.m. 
Tennessee Beer Laws
Historically, the state had some rigid drinking laws that governed alcohol sales, but in recent years, regulations have relaxed.
Tennessee is composed mostly of wet counties, but in Moore County (considered a dry county), you can purchase beer along with a meal. As of July 2023, you can only buy to-go beer at Davidson County’s restaurants.
No sale of alcohol is allowed during Thanksgiving, Easter, and Christmas. So you better start buying beer ahead of those days if you plan to drink alcohol with your friends and family.
What Are Tennessee’s Beer Sale Hours?
Monday – Saturday
From Monday through Saturday, beer lovers in Tennessee can typically buy alcohol between 8 a.m. and 3 a.m. the following day.
But it varies depending on the establishment. You may buy beer for off-premise consumption from retail stores like convenience and grocery stores from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m.
Liquor or package stores can also sell alcohol from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m. But bars and restaurants can sell beer and serve alcohol until 3 a.m. the following day.
You can still buy beer on Sunday and other alcoholic beverages in retail stores. The window time allowed for purchasing beer starts at 10 a.m.
The closing time to sell alcohol is set at 11 p.m. for off-premise consumption, while you can still purchase alcohol for on-premise consumption until 3 a.m.
However, it still varies depending on the local jurisdictions.
The bar we visited in Nashville confirms that they can still serve beer until 3 a.m. But in some cities, especially dry counties, bars and restaurants may stop serving alcohol earlier on Sundays.
Can You Get Beer Delivered?
Yes, you can get your beer delivered in Tennessee. The delivery must be done to only the physical address indicated by the customer and during the allowed alcohol sales hours of the business.
The recipient must also present a government-issued photo ID to be verified by the authorized employee of the business.
Unless, of course, the receiver looks about 50 years old, verification must be done if the receiver is in a legal drinking age to consume alcohol.
This ID compliance is a complicated issue in Tennessee. In fact, the to-go alcoholic drinks ended in July 2023 due to a significant noncompliance percentage of restaurants illegally selling alcoholic drinks to minors .
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Buying Growlers & Other Unsealed Beer Containers Laws
Growlers provide an eco-friendly and sustainable way to enjoy your favorite alcohol in Tennessee. But Tennessee alcohol laws may consider it an open container if the alcohol content is not full or the container is within the driver’s reach.
“Whether you’re in the heart of Memphis or exploring the scenic beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains, knowing when you can indulge in a refreshing brew is a must.” – Liquor Laboratory
However, drivers are the only ones prohibited from any alcoholic beverage within their reach, but passengers are allowed. The penalty for violating the open container law may cause you a fine but no jail time unless you have other charges.
When Do Gas Stations Stop Selling Beer In Tennessee?
Gas stations in Tennessee, with attached properly licensed convenience stores, usually stop selling beer at 11 p.m. from Monday to Sunday.
Gas stations offer the convenience of grabbing a quick refreshment to residents and road-trippers, but not all offer beers.
Besides, although some gas stations operate 24 hours, seven days a week, beer-selling hours are greatly restricted by the state’s laws. So, it’s wise to check on your local gas station or do your beer-buying activity early.
Can I buy beer in the morning in Tennessee?
Yes, you can beer in the morning when you’re in Tennessee.
Different retail locations have different operating hours, but the earliest you can buy beer is 6 a.m. or 7 a.m., depending on the local laws.
Can you buy beer anytime in Tennessee?
No, you can not buy beer anytime in Tennessee. Tennessee also has restricted hours for selling alcoholic beverages like beer, wine, and distilled spirits.
Liquor stores or retail package stores in many counties sell beer from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m. They may also sell wine or high-gravity beer but can not give free drinks.
When can I buy beer on Sunday in Tennessee?
You can buy beer on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 a.m. in Tennessee, depending on where you would purchase alcohol. Grocery and liquor stores can sell beer until 11 p.m.
Can you buy beer and wine in grocery stores in Tennessee?
Absolutely. You can buy beer and wine in Tennessee grocery stores. The implementation of this law took place in 2016, giving consumers another convenient option to purchase beer or a wine bottle aside from liquor stores.
These days, the Tennessee law about selling alcohol has been changing constantly, letting consumers have more convenience when buying alcohol than before.
By state law, people older than 21 with a blood alcohol content up to 0.08 are considered legally drunk.
But people under 21 can get arrested if caught with a 0.02 blood alcohol concentration level. The penalty ranges from paying a fine to a few months of community service.
Tennessee has five dry counties, but it is illegal to sell alcoholic beverages at retail centers on Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter.