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'Overwhelmingly Positive': Cracker Barrel Tests Alcohol Sales in Florida, Tennessee

By Rhian Hunt – Jun 8, 2020 at 1:07PM

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The pilot program offers hard cider, mimosa cocktails, and more at select locations.

Adding a bit of zing to its menu of "honest to goodness homestyle" breakfast, lunch, and dinner offerings, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store (CBRL -1.26%) is testing alcohol beverage sales, first in Florida, and now at two locations in Tennessee. Following an enthusiastic reception for its Florida rollout of adult beverages last week, the company said in a statement today it's also testing the waters in the Volunteer State.

Among the alcoholic offerings tested out are hard cider, several different types beer and wine, and cocktails like mimosas. CEO Jill Cochran remarked about the mimosa cocktails, which come in strawberry and orange flavors, "It was surprising to me how popular they are."

Orange mimosas.

Image source: Getty Images.

A Cracker Barrel representative expanded on the company's plans in a statement to Food & Wine, saying the "results of this test thus far have been overwhelmingly positive, and so we have decided to expand the test in different markets in Florida, Tennessee, and Kentucky." The company has not yet stated when the pilot for alcohol sales will begin in Kentucky.

Cracker Barrel, like many restaurants, saw its sales plunge as COVID-19 shut down dine-in facilities across the country in March. The company responded by simplifying its menu and emphasizing delivery. It still offers curbside pickup of food for those who are nervous about sitting in close proximity to other diners, though 505 out of its 664 restaurants currently offer dine-in services again, with limited seating to ensure social distancing.

Rhian Hunt has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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