Dec 26, 2023

New Music Venue License Privileges and Expanded Brewpub-Restaurant License Exchange Program

This Industry Advisory offers insight to licensees eligible to exercise privileges originally authorized by SB 793 and SB 298.

Update: This Advisory was updated on December 26, 2023 to reflect new guidance due to the enactment of AB 1704 and SB 76.

Disclaimer: Industry advisories are not regulatory, nor do they have the force of law. These advisories merely provide information about a statute or regulation. Please consult the statute, regulation, and/or an attorney before taking any action to ensure compliance with the law.

In 2022, legislation was signed into law that created the Music Venue License. Laws were also adopted to establish new license exchange programs.

Music Venue License and Exchange Program

SB 793 (Wiener, Chapter 468, Statutes of 2022) established the Music Venue License (type 90), an on-sale general license that authorizes the sale and service of alcoholic beverages (beer, wine, and distilled spirits) for consumption on the premises of a music entertainment facility. A music entertainment facility is defined as a publicly or privately owned live performance venue, concert hall, auditorium, or an enclosed arena where music or entertainment events are presented for a price of admission. Alcohol sales and service may only occur from two-hours before and until one hour after a live performance at the licensed premises. Food service is not required, and minors are allowed on the premises. For additional information about the Music Venue License and the associated rules governing its operation you may refer to the statutory language by SB 793 or you may contact your local ABC District Office. The department has also adopted regulations pertaining to music venue licenses.

Pursuant to SB 793, the holder of an on-sale general eating place license (type 47) or on-sale public premises license (type 48) may exchange that license with ABC for a Music Venue License. The exchange may be made at any time upon the approval of the Department, the payment of a $100 exchange fee, and compliance with the provisions applicable to the issuance of an original license. To exchange the license, the licensee must meet and comply with the definitions and criteria pertaining to music venues established in Business and Professions Code sections 23550 and 23552.

Update: SB 76 (Wiener, Chapter 700, Statutes of 2023) will take effect January 1, 2024. This new law makes music venue licenses eligible for duplicate licenses (meaning multiple alcohol sales points in the venue), subject to the same fees charged for a duplicate type 47 license. It also allows music venues to host private events or private functions not open to the general public (e.g. a wedding) only during the hours of operation permitted by the license. Private events/functions are exempt from the live performance requirement of the license and the eligibility criteria for a venue that is specified in subdivision (c) of Section 23550 (paid ticket or cover charge, publication of the event, etc.). This is considered an adjunct privilege of the license and the music venue’s principal purpose must be to operate as a music entertainment facility. This means that the number of private events/functions occurring at the premises shall not exceed the number of live entertainment events occurring at the facility during any calendar year. Licensees are required by Business and Professions Code section 23552 to maintain records for the preceding three calendar years to verify compliance if the venue is used to host private events/functions.

Brewpub-Restaurant License Exchange Program

Update: The brewpub-restaurant license exchange program has been expanded to all type 75 licenses that were first issued before January 1, 2020, regardless of any subsequent transfers thereof. As a result of this expansion enacted by AB 1704 (Santiago, Chapter 375, Statutes of 2023), a brewpub-restaurant license that was originally issued by ABC before January 1, 2020, may be exchanged for a bona fide public eating place license (type 47) upon approval of the Department, provided the following:

  1. Payment of a $100 exchange fee (the fee may be adjusted annually by the Department pursuant to subdivisions (d) and (e) of Section 23320)
  2. Payment of the fee required for a new permanent license for an on-sale general eating place
  3. Compliance with statutory and regulatory licensing requirements

A license issued as part of an exchange pursuant to this bill would be prohibited from being sold or transferred for a price greater than the fee paid by the seller or transferor. Licenses issued pursuant to this bill may be designated as an “on-sale general license for special use” and shall not count towards the cap on on-sale general licenses available under Sections 23816 and 23821.


Additional information may be obtained by contacting:

Alcoholic Beverage Control
3927 Lennane Drive, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95834

Email us at
Call (916) 419-2500