Terry E. Branstad, Governor
Kim Reynolds, Lt. Governor
Stephen Larson, Administrator

Catering Privilege

Legally Speaking: A Privilege That Caters to Licensees (PDF)

A Catering Privilege may only be added to a 12-month class B (hotel/motel) or C (restaurant/bar) liquor license free of charge. A Catering Privilege allows the licensee to act as the agent of a private social host for the purpose of providing and serving alcoholic beverages at private social gatherings in a private place.  The licensee must serve food with the alcoholic beverages.  All food and beverages must be served without cost to the guests.  Neither the licensee nor the social host may ask guests to make donations in payment for food or alcoholic beverages.

The words "catering privilege" will be reflected at the bottom of the license if the licensee has obtained a catering privilege. The catering privilege is not a stand-alone license. It expires with the license and must be renewed annually as part of the class "B" or class "C" liquor license renewal.

For the purpose of the Catering Privilege, a private social gathering is one that meets all of the following criteria:

  • The place for the social gathering is not a licensed alcohol beverage establishment.
  • The general public does not have access to the private social gathering.
  • Persons attending the social gathering are limited to the social host and the host’s bona fide guests.
  • Goods and services are not purchased by or sold to the guests during the social gathering.
  • Guests are not charged or responsible for payment of any fees, fares, ticket prices or donations to attend the gathering.
  • The caterer does not pay rent or other charges for use of the private place.  (A private social host may rent a place for a private social gathering, and is solely responsible for any rent or other charges for the private place).

Examples of private social gatherings held in private places held in unlicensed private places  include but are not limited to:

  • Parties held in private residences
  • Wedding receptions held in churches
  • Business parties held in unlicensed private business offices or buildings

123.95  PREMISES MUST BE LICENSED -- EXCEPTION AS TO

CONVENTIONS AND SOCIAL GATHERINGS.

  1. A person shall not allow the dispensing or consumption of alcoholic liquor, except wines and beer, in any establishment unless the establishment is licensed under this chapter or except as otherwise provided in this section.  The holder of an annual class "B" liquor control license or an annual class "C" liquor control license may act as the agent of a private social host for the purpose of providing and serving alcoholic liquor, wine, and beer as part of a food catering service for a private social gathering in a private place.  The holder of an annual special class "C" liquor control license shall not act as the agent of a private social host for the purpose of providing and serving wine and beer as part of a food catering service for a private social gathering in a private place. The private social host or the licensee shall not solicit donations in payment for the food or alcoholic beverages from the guests, and the alcoholic beverages and food shall be served without cost to the guests.  Section 123.92 does not apply to a liquor control licensee who acts in accordance with this section when the liquor control licensee is providing and serving food and alcoholic beverages as an agent of a private social host at a private social gathering in a private place which is not on the licensed premises.
     
  2. An applicant for a class "B" liquor control license or class "C" liquor control license shall state on the application for the license that the licensee intends to engage in catering food and alcoholic beverages for private social gatherings and the catering  privilege shall be noted on the license.  A licensee who engages in catering food and alcoholic beverages for private social  gatherings shall maintain a record on the licensed premises which includes the name and address of the host of the private social gathering, and the date for which catering was provided.  The record maintained pursuant to this section shall be open to inspection pursuant to section 123.30, subsection 1, during normal business hours of the licensee.
     
  3. However, bona fide conventions or meetings may bring their own legal liquor onto the licensed premises if the liquor is served to delegates or guests without cost.  All other provisions of this chapter shall be applicable to such premises.  The provisions of this section shall have no application to private social gatherings of friends or relatives in a private home or private place which is not of a commercial nature nor where goods or services may be purchased or sold nor any charge or rent or other thing of value is exchanged for the use of such premises for any purpose other than for sleeping quarters.

Printed from the website on February 26, 2017 at 2:12am.