The Tennessee-based chain could add the drinks throughout Florida, lawyer says.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store plans to add beer and wine – at least temporarily – to the drink menu at its restaurant at 2441 Florida 16, south of the St. Augustine Premium Outlets and west of Interstate 95.
The St. Johns County Planning and Zoning Board at its meeting May 21 unanimously approved a special use permit to allow the on-site consumption of beer and wine.
The restaurant seats 182 and was established in 1997.
The board determined the restaurant is within a commercial highway tourist zoning district; is compatible with surrounding uses; meets the standards of the land use and land development code; and no schools or churches exist within 1,000 feet of the establishment.
The next step for Cracker Barrel is to seek a license from the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, which regulates the sale of alcoholic beverages.
“Cracker Barrel is always considering potential ways we can offer our guests new options. We conduct many different kinds of tests in our stores each year, as part of our rigorous product development process,” the Lebanon, Tennessee-based company said in an emailed statement.
“Serving beer and wine is just one of those many potential options currently being tested at some of our stores. This testing process guides our ongoing work to offer guests new options in the friendly environment that has made Cracker Barrel a ‘Home Away from Home’ for more than 50 years,” it said.
“Securing permits is just one of the initial steps we have taken as part of this testing process, and is not an indication of a permanent menu change at this time.”
The applicant’s Tallahassee-based attorneys from Rutledge Ecenia said Cracker Barrel plans to introduce beer and wine to the “majority of stores in the State of Florida.”