Des Moines Airport Considers Liquor Rule Changes

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DES MOINES, Iowa — You could soon enjoy drinking alcoholic beverages at your gate, if the Des Moines International Airport gets approved for a proposed coffee and bar kiosk in one of its terminals.

The grab-and-go shop and bar would be located on the far north side of Concourse C, and would allow passengers to drink alcohol at the gates while they wait for their flights.

Currently, alcohol is served at Portermill and Arugula and Rye; but like most airports in the United States, drinks must be consumed within the restaurant.

If the airport gets approval for the new liquor license, passengers would be able to get wine, beer and liquor at the kiosk.

Executive Director Kevin Foley said the airport needs approval to run the grab-and-go kiosk with alcohol first. Allowing passengers to bring their alcoholic beverages throughout the airport’s concourses would require a different license.

“We just need the license passed and see what the license allows us to do,” Foley said. “Then we can make decisions for what’s next after that.

The goal is to help passengers bypass long lines with convenient food and beverage options. Foley said this is the airport’s first and foremost priority.

“It is really about trying to get the passenger experience as pleasant as we can make it,” he said. “Passengers like to stay nearby their gate, keeping an eye on when their plane will board. This would provide a quick and easy option to grab a drink or food.”

He said including food from restaurants at the kiosk is also an idea they are considering.

Foley said everyone on the Des Moines Airport Authority Board was receptive of this idea. The city’s zoning board of adjustment will consider the airport’s liquor license proposal at its meeting this upcoming Tuesday.

Passengers throughout the airport said they welcome this potential change.

“Often times the restaurants are crowded or security takes longer than expected,” Des Moines resident Jim Green said. “It makes it difficult to get breakfast or a cup of coffee, which isn’t the worst problem in the world, but it’s nice to get something quick before travel.”


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