This month, Virginia’s ban on clear grain alcohol products ends, and products such as Everclear will be sold at liquor stores and served in bars.
As of July 1, the state of Vermont is now the only remaining place in the U.S. that does not allow the sale of grain alcohol products like Everclear. The amendment to Virginia's law came after a bill sponsored by Republican Delegate Barry Night of Virginia Beach was signed by the governor of Virginia in June. The new law states that alcohol up to 151 proof is now legal to sell and possess in Virginia. Bars are also allowed to serve the drink, however, some may opt not to since it is rarely used in mixed drinks.
The best and most commonly known moonshine product sold in the U.S. is Everclear, which comes in varying proofs. Before the change in the law, Virginians could already purchase 151 proof liquor such as Bacardi 151, which has a distinctive color, taste, character, or aroma. It also previously allowed the sale of flavored liquors, such as rum and vodka, that have proofs higher than 151. Everclear, meanwhile, has no odor, color, or taste, making it easier to consume in large quantities before consumers start to feel buzzed or drunk -- which can be very dangerous.
The bill's sponsor said that the law was outdated
, causing Virginians to give their tax money to other states in order to purchase the spirit.
While the sale of moonshine is now legal in Virginia, some other states in the nation allow the sale of grain alcohol up to 190 proof. Vermont is the only remaining state that still bans the sale of all grain alcohol.
The new law is in effect until 2022, when Virginia lawmakers will vote on it again.