Glossary

To help you gain a better understanding of the regulatory process, we have provided a glossary of the terminology used by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC), the beverage industry and hospitality businesses operating in Texas.

Our glossary is divided into three sections beginning with General Terms and Types of Alcohol, followed by TABC Definitions and Beer License Terms. TABC definitions were provided by the agency and have been adapted for use on this site.

General Terms and Types of Alcohol
Ale and Malt Liquor
Any type of malt beverage that contains more than 4% alcohol by weight.
Barrel
A standard of measure equivalent to 31 gallons of beer.
Beer
Any type of malt beverage that contains at least .05% alcohol by volume, but no more than 4% alcohol by weight.
Distilled Spirits
Any type of liquor produced through the process of distillation. This includes spirits of wine, whiskey, rum, brandy, and gin.
Distributors
Act as middlemen. Typically facilitate transactions between manufacturers and wholesalers.
Liquor
Any type of alcoholic beverage that contains more than 4% alcohol by weight, with exceptions noted.
Manufacturers
Produce alcohol. Do not usually sell direct-to-consumer, although some (e.g. breweries or wineries) are allowed to sell or serve their product on their premises up to a certain amount.
Mixed Beverage
Any type of drink that is at least partly alcoholic and sold in a sealed or unsealed container for on-premise consumption.
Retailers
Sell alcohol directly to consumers.
Wet and Dry Areas
Local alcohol elections (held by a county, city, or Justice of the Peace precinct) determine what kind of alcohol can be sold and how within a given area. While some counties are fully “wet” (no restrictions on alcohol sales) or fully “dry” (no alcohol sales allowed), most are a combination of both. Consult the TABC website to determine whether your location falls within a wet or dry area.

The City of Dallas has dry areas by zoning and should be checked by a qualified professional.
Wholesalers
High-volume buyers. Usually re-sell alcohol to retailers or other wholesalers.
Wine and Various Liquor
Any type of alcohol produced through the fermentation of grapes, fruits, berries, or honey.
Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) Definitions
Agent’s Permit (A)
Allows the holder to represent any individual or entity authorized to sell liquor to retail dealers in the state of Texas.
Airline Beverage Permit (AB)
Allows an airline to sell or serve alcohol while operating in or over the state of Texas.
Beverage Cartage Permit (PE)
Allows those holding a Mixed Beverage (MB) or Private Club Permit (N, NB, or NE) to transport alcohol from the place of purchase to the licensed location.
Bonded Warehouse Permit (J)
Allows a storage facility to store liquor on behalf of anyone holding a Public Storage Permit (K)
Bonded Warehouse Permit (Dry Area) (JD)
Allows a storage facility in a dry area to store wine on behalf of a winery that holds a Public Storage Permit (K)
Brewer’s Permit (B)
Allows the holder to manufacture and sell ale and malt liquor to wholesalers. As long as the combined annual production of ale and beer does not exceed 225,000 barrels, this license also authorizes the brewer to sell ale directly to consumers on the brewery premises. Direct-to-consumer sales of ale and beer must not exceed 5,000 barrels per year.
Brewer’s Self-Distribution Permit (DA)
Allows a licensed brewer whose annual production of ale and beer does not exceed 125,000 barrels to sell ale to in-state retailers and wholesalers. Combined sales of ale and beer on the premises must not exceed 40,000 barrels per year.
Carrier’s Permit (C)
Allows wholesalers (W, X, or LX Permit holders) to transport liquor within and across state lines.
Caterer’s Permit (CB)
Allows the holder of a Mixed Beverage Permit (MB) to temporarily sell mixed beverages at off-premise locations, provided that the sales occur in a wet area. Note that the holder must still apply for a Daily Temporary Mixed Beverage Permit (TB) for each specific event.
Daily Temporary Mixed Beverage Permit (TB)
Allows the holder of a Mixed Beverage Permit (MB) to temporarily sell mixed beverages for on-premise consumption at a location other than the place for which they are licensed.
Daily Temporary Private Club Permit (TN)
Allows the holder of a Private Club Permit (N, NB, or NE) to temporarily sell alcohol for on-premise consumption at a location other than the place for which they are licensed, provided that it is in the same county.
Distiller’s and Rectifier’s Permit (D)
Allows the holder to manufacture, rectify, purify, and refine distilled spirits. The end product may then be bottled, packaged, and sold. The holder is also authorized to import distilled spirits for the purpose of manufacturing and rectifying.
Distiller’s Agent’s Permit (DK)
Allows the holder to represent anyone holding a Distiller’s and Rectifier’s Permit (D) in the state of Texas. This license qualifies them to solicit and process orders from wholesalers, and to host free tastings of distilled spirits at any location that holds a Package Store Permit (P).
Food and Beverage Certificate (FB)
Is issued in conjunction with an alcohol permit if food service is the primary business taking place at the permitted location (i.e. a restaurant). Those holding a Mixed Beverage (MB) or Private Club Permit (N) may also be eligible for this certificate if food service is available on the premises and if their gross receipts from alcoholic beverages do not exceed 50% of their total gross receipts.
Forwarding Center Authority (FC)
Authorizes a manufacturer to temporarily store alcoholic beverages in a regional forwarding center, provided that the facility is located in a wet area.
Industrial Permit (I)
Allows for the use of alcohol and denatured alcohol in an industrial context, which covers a wide range of scientific, chemical, mechanical, and medicinal purposes. Pharmacists, state institutions, school or university laboratories, and medical facilities are not required to obtain this permit.
Local Cartage Permit (E or ET if permit holder is a transfer company)
Allows warehouse or transfer companies to move liquor within a city or town. Those holding a Package Store Permit (P or Q) are also authorized to deliver liquor directly to customers within the city and to move liquor within the county between licensed locations.
Local Distributor’s Permit (LP)
Allows the holder of a Package Store Permit (P) to sell alcohol to the holder of a Mixed Beverage (MB) or Private Club Permit (N or NE).
Local Industrial Alcohol Manufacturer’s Permit (LI)
Allows the holder to manufacture, rectify, and refine industrial alcohol. The holder is also authorized to denature or blend alcohol for the purpose of making and selling motor fuel.
Manufacturer’s Agent’s Permit (T)
Allows the holder to represent nonresident sellers (S Permit holders) within the state of Texas, and to solicit and process import orders on their behalf.
Manufacturer’s Agent’s Warehousing Permit (AW)
Allows the holder to store beer, ale, or malt liquor (whether authorized to be sold in Texas or not), and to ship such beverages to areas where they can legally be sold.
Market Research Packager’s Permit (MR)
Allows the holder to receive alcoholic beverages from manufacturers and to adapt the packaging elements (containers, labels etc.) as a market research service before returning them.
Minibar Permit (MI)
Allows a hotel that holds a Mixed Beverage Permit (MB) to sell alcohol from locked containers inside guest rooms.
Mixed Beverage Permit (MB)
Allows the holder to sell mixed beverages from unsealed containers and wine, beer, ale, and malt liquor in any legal container. All beverages are for on-premise consumption only, although limited exceptions may be made for a customer to take a bottle of corked wine home if the bottle is not finished.
Mixed Beverage Restaurant Permit With FB (RM)
Allows a restaurant in a wet area to sell mixed drinks, wine, beer, ale, and malt liquor to customers for on-premise consumption. Note that at least 51% of total revenue has to come from food.
Mixed Beverage Late Hours Permit (LB)
Allows the holder of a Mixed Beverage Permit (MB) to sell alcohol until 2 a.m., rather than midnight or 1 a.m.
Non-Resident Brewer’s Permit (U)
Allows out-of-state brewers to sell ale or malt liquor to qualified importers in the state of Texas, provided that they also hold a Nonresident Seller’s Permit (S).
Non-Resident Seller’s Permit (S)
Allows out-of-state distillers, wineries, importers, and brokers to solicit, process, and ship orders for liquor to qualified importers in the state of Texas.
Package Store Permit (P)
Allows a licensed retailer to sell liquor, malt, and vinous liquors directly to customers for off-premise consumption.
Package Store Tasting Permit (PS)
Allows the holder of a Package Store Permit (P or Q) to host alcoholic beverage tastings on their premises.
Package Store Permit (Wine Only) (Q)
Allows a licensed retailer to sell wine and vinous liquors directly to customers for off-premise consumption.
Passenger Train Beverage Permit (PT)
Allows for the sale and service of alcohol on a commercial passenger train while in the state of Texas.
Private Carrier’s Permit (O)
Allows brewers, distillers and rectifiers, wineries, wholesalers, and wine bottlers (B, D, G, W, X, LX, or Z Permit holders) to transport alcohol to and from their licensed premises.
Private Club Exemption Certificate Permit (NE)
Allows certain fraternal and veterans’ clubs to serve alcohol to members and their guests.
Private Club Registration Permit (N)
Allows private clubs to serve all types of alcohol to members and their guests.
Private Club Beer and Wine Permit (NB)
Allows private clubs to store and serve wine, beer, and malt liquor to members and their guests.
Private Club Late Hours Permit (NL)
Allows the holder of a Private Club Permit (N or NE) to serve alcohol until 2 a.m., rather than midnight or 1 a.m.
Private Storage Permit (L)
Allows a wholesaler or winery (W, X, LX, or G Permit holders) to store alcohol in a private warehouse.
Promotional Permit (PR)
Allows the holder to promote the sale of alcoholic beverages in Texas on behalf of a brewer, distiller, rectifier, manufacturer, winery, or wine bottler.
Public Storage Permit (K)
Allows the holder to store alcohol in a licensed public bonded warehouse, as opposed to a private warehouse.
Out-Of-State Winery Direct Shipper’s Permit (DS)
Allows for the sale and delivery of wine directly to customers in the state of Texas, regardless of whether or not the delivery location is in a wet area.
Wholesaler’s Permit (W)
Allows for the importation of distilled spirits, malt liquor, ale, and vinous liquor from nonresident sellers, brewers, and other wholesalers (S, B, W, X, or LX Permit holders), and the subsequent sale to authorized retailers and wholesalers.
Wholesaler (General Class B) Permit (X)
Allows for the importation of malt liquor, ale, and vinous liquor from nonresident sellers, brewers, and other wholesalers (S, B, W, X, or LX Permit holders), and the subsequent sale to authorized retailers and wholesalers.
Wholesaler (Local Class B) Permit (LX)
Allows for the importation of malt and vinous liquor from nonresident sellers, brewers, and other wholesalers (S, B, W, X, or LX Permit holders), and the subsequent sale to authorized retailers and wholesalers in the same county.
Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit - Excursion Boat (V)
Allows for the sale and service of beer and wine on an excursion boat, provided that it is operating within the bounds of a wet area.
Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit for Railway Dining, Buffet or Club Cars (Y)
Allows for the sale and service of beer and wine in a railway dining, buffet, or club car, provided that the train is operating in a wet area.
Wine Bottler’s Permit (Z)
Allows the holder to purchase, bottle, re-bottle, label, package, and sell wine to wholesalers, wineries, and other wine bottlers in the state of Texas.
Winery Permit (G)
Allows a licensed location to manufacture, bottle, label, and package wine. Holders of this license can also sell or buy wine from wholesalers, wine bottlers, and other wineries, sell wine to directly to customers, and distribute wine without charge for on-premise consumption.
Winery Festival Permit (GF)
Allows a winery (G Permit) to sell wine at a festival or market as long as the event lasts no more than four consecutive days at the same location.
Winery Storage Permit (GS)
Which is only issued to licensed wineries (G Permit), allows a winery to store their product on their premises, regardless of wet area restrictions.
Beer License Terms
Agent’s Beer License (BK)
Allows the holder to solicit and promote beer sales on behalf of manufacturers and distributors.
Branch Distributor’s License (BC)
Allows the holder of a General Distributor’s License (BB) to add an additional location, provided that it is in a wet area.
Brewpub License (BP)
Allows the holder to manufacture, brew, bottle, can, package and label malt liquor, ale, and beer. The holder can also sell or serve the produced alcohol directly to customers for on-premise consumption or to authorized retailers, provided that production is limited to 10,000 barrels or less.
General Distributor’s License (BB)
Allows the holder to sell beer to private clubs, retailers, and other distributors, to serve beer without charge for on-premise consumption, and to distribute or sell beer with the intent of shipping the product outside the state.
Importer’s License (BI)
Allows a manufacturer or distributor to import beer from out-of-state manufacturers.
Importer’s Carrier’s License (BJ)
Allows a licensed importer to transport imported beer within the state.
Local Distributor’s License (BD)
Allows for the sale of beer to authorized distributors, licensed retailers, and private clubs within the county, and for the distribution of beer without charge for on-premise consumption.
Manufacturer’s License (BA)
Allows the holder to manufacture and sell beer to distributors, and to distribute beer without charge for on-premise consumption.
Manufacturer’s Self-Distribution License (DB)
Allows licensed manufacturers whose annual production of beer and ale is less than 125,000 barrels to sell beer to distributors, retailers, and private clubs. Total sales of beer and ale on the premises must not exceed 40,000 barrels per year.
Manufacturer’s Warehouse License (MW)
Allows a manufacturer to import and deliver beer from out-of-state to a warehouse for the purpose of selling it to distributors or moving it to another warehouse.
Non-Resident Manufacturer’s License (BS)
Allows an out-of-state manufacturer to transport beer into the state of Texas, provided that it is delivered to an authorized importer.
Retail Dealer’s Off-Premise License (BF)
Allows for the sale of beer directly to the customer for off-premise consumption.
Retail Dealer’s On-Premise License (BE)
Allows for the sale of beer directly to the customer for either on-premise or off-premise consumption, provided that there is seating for the customers.
Retail Dealer’s On-Premise Late Hours License (BL)
Allows the holder of a Retail Dealer’s On-Premise License (BE) or a Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit (BG) to sell and serve alcohol for on-premise consumption until 2 a.m., rather than midnight or 1 a.m.
Storage License (SL)
Allows for the importation and temporary storage of beer, ale, and malt liquor from Mexico. The licensed location must be in a wet area of a county bordering Mexico that has a population of fewer than 300,000 people.
Temporary License (BH)
Allows for the temporary sale of beer directly to customers for either on-premise or off-premise consumption. The license can only be issued to the holder of a Retail Dealer’s On-Premise License (BE) or a Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit (BG) for a period not to exceed four days. This permit is typically issued for picnics or other outdoor celebrations.
Temporary Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit (BH or HP)
Allows for the temporary sale of beer, malt liquor, and wine directly to customers for either on-premise or off-premise consumption. The license can only be issued to the holder of a Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit (BG) or a Mixed Beverage Permit (MB) for a period not to exceed four days. This permit is typically issued for picnics, outdoor celebrations, and certain professional car racing events.
Temporary - Special Three-Day Wine and Beer Permit (SB)
Allows for the temporary sale of beer, malt liquor, and wine directly to customers for on-premise consumption. This license is typically issued to nonprofit organizations for special events.
Temporary Permit - Charitable Auction Permit (CA)
Allows a tax-exempt nonprofit [i.e. designated as a 501(c)(3)] to sell alcohol through a charitable auction. Only one license can be issued to an organization per year, for a period not to exceed five days.
Wine and Beer Retailer’s Permit (BG)
Allows for the sale of beer, ale, malt liquor, and wine directly to customers for either on-premise or off-premise consumption, provided that there is seating for the customers.
Wine and Beer Retailer’s Off-Premise Permit (BQ)
Allows for the sale of wine, beer, and malt liquor in their original containers directly to customers for off-premise consumption.

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The TABC definitions are wordy and often unclear, making them difficult to comprehend. We've tried to simplify them here in our glossary.

A beer barrel equals 31 gallons.

To determine whether your location falls within a wet or dry area, call the LaBarba staff.