GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Today was the first Sunday that people in Greenville could make a toast to alcohol sales starting at 10 a.m.
Previously, alcohol couldn’t be sold on Sundays until noon.
9 On Your Side visited several restaurants to hear about what the new start time has already done for business.
“I’ve gone through about ten more bottles of champagne than I normally would from mimosas,” Winslow’s Tavern bartender Ryan Naegel said.
Naegel says he is already seeing the impact the new start time is having.
“Just in the two hours alone, a few hundred if not up to a thousand more in sales for just everybody,” Naegel said.
Others in Uptown are noticing the same trend.
“It’s not even noon yet I don’t think, and I’ve already made just about as much I would make in a full day, until 2 o clock at least,” Starlight Cafe bartender Casey Burns said.
“For sure busier,” Meaghan Medoma of Coastal Fog added. “People were excited to come in and get a mimosa to go with their quiche. They were just excited. We have been a lot busier, line out the door right at 10 a.m.”
Customers say they enjoy having the choice to order alcohol.
“If you want it, it’s there, it’s available, and it makes your meal a little more fancy,” Vanessa Osbourne, visiting Greenville for the weekend, said.
“You’ll be more inclined to order drinks and that jacks up the bill and probably eat more,” Allison Weaver, visiting from Raleigh, added. “It definitely makes you want to hang out, enjoy each other’s company, and spend more time at the restaurant.”
The new start time allows restaurants to bring in more money for bartenders and increase their inventory.
“It has an impact on tipping, just more alcohol sales you have, the higher the sales, you get more tips on higher sales,” Burns said.
“It’s helped with ordering more wines, our inventory is getting larger now that we can sell more,” Medoma added.
The businesses believe everyone benefits from the two-hour time change.
“It’s always good to see progression especially when it’s clearly something that everybody wanted,” Naegel said. “It just shows by the amount of business we are getting today.”
“I mean Sundays are a nice relaxing day, want to kick back and there’s nothing wrong with having a mimosa before noon,” Burns said.