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Derek Gerard pours a glass at a tasting in December. New York State has lifted a tax on tastings at wineries. (Credit: Rachel Young file photo)
Derek Gerard of Laurel Lake Vineyards tasting room manager pours a glass at a tasting in December. New York State has lifted a tax on tastings at wineries. (Credit: Rachel Young file photo)

They’ll drink to this!

Local wineries and breweries both got some good news this week, courtesy of New York State.

New York made wine tastings at wineries tax free, and also allocated $350,000 for hops and malting barley research to help specialists understand the varieties that work best for regional agriculture, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement.

Both moves came as a result of input received during a state Wine, Beer, Spirits and Cider Summit in April.

“Anything that eliminates any type of burden we’ve had is certainly a welcome change in the law,” said Sal Diliberto, president of the Long Island Wine Council and the owner of Diliberto Winery in Jamesport.

Traditionally, a winery must collect tax when selling wine and wine products, whether by the bottle or glass, according to the governor. The Tax Law provided an exemption for when products are used “at an event sponsored by a winery, farm winery, wholesaler or importer at its licensed premises,” but did not cover wine tastings.

Read the full story on The Suffolk Times website.

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