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Distilleries in Utah — the state actually has a dozen of them — should soon be able to host "tastings" of their products.

The Senate voted 23-2 on Wednesday to pass HB228. Because it was amended, it was returned to the House for consideration, where HB228 previously passed.

The bill limits samplings to a serving of 2.5 ounces of spirituous liquor, allows only one tasting a day, requires food to be offered during tastings, prohibits the presence of children, and mandates signs warning about the dangers of drinking and driving after drinking.

Sen. Jerry Stevenson, R-Layton, the Senate sponsor of the bill, said Utah law has not allowed such tastings — and the bill is similar to laws and rules allowing tastings at breweries and wineries. He said it is needed to allow distilleries to help sell products.

The bill earlier faced some opposition in the House, where some members argued it could lead to more drinking.

"I just don't think we need to cater to the alcohol industry in this state. I just don't think we do," said Rep. Mike Noel, R-Kanab, said in earlier debate. "I think we've got family values here. We don't need to keep picking away at these rules."

— Lee Davidson