How to Start a Wine Business

Written by hulbert lee
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How to Start a Wine Business
Starting a wine business can be lucrative, but it takes a lot of hard work and dedication. (bottle wine and glasses with a wine image by mashe from

With the economy slowing down, wine is becoming more affordable to more people, and with thousands of different varieties to choose from, it is becoming a popular trend in today's culture. Whether people drink wine for the taste or to socialise with others, starting a wine business has great potential for a successful venture. But because there are many regulations for selling alcohol, be aware of some of the basic requirements before starting a wine business.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Business license
  • Alcoholic beverage license
  • Wine permit

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  1. 1

    Acquire a business license. You will need a business license to legally start a wine business in your local area. To apply for one, visit the Business Licenses and Permits section of the website and enter the state where you will be starting your business. Choose the business type that best fits the description of your business or select "General Licensing" if you don't see your business type. Click on "Search." This will bring you to a page that gives you information on how to apply for a business license in your state.

  2. 2

    Apply for an alcoholic beverage license. An alcoholic beverage license allows a person to sell alcoholic beverages to retail customers. To apply for one, contact your state agency's website and search for "alcoholic beverage license." Click the link that provides relevant information on obtaining a license and view any other information on your state's licensing schedule, fee and types. There should also be an area that shows you the different cities that have an office. Select the city with an office nearest you, and contact them to apply for an alcoholic beverage license. Applicants must be 21.

  3. 3

    Obtain a wine permit from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. A wine permit is required for dealing with tax audits from the IRS. In relation to your wine, tax audits verify the proper payment of alcohol tax and ensures compliance with laws and regulations by taxpayers. Visit the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau website for more information on how to apply for a wine permit.

  4. 4

    Purchase wine for the business. Research who the customers are in the business' area to purchase the right kind of wine that suits their taste. Buy wine from wholesale wine distributors for cost-effectiveness.

  5. 5

    Attract customers to the new wine business. Have a wine-tasting event and give free samples of different types of wine. Create a website with information of the newest wine trends. Stand out with wine business cards, a more convenient item to carry compared to flyers and leaflets. Give away business card to fine gift shops, vineyards, wedding planners and liquor stores.

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