Two Smith Co. stores first to sell beer, wine

FLINT (KYTX) - Brookshire's in Flint is one of the first two stores to get their license approved by the TABC. While many Brookshire's in Smith County will start selling beer and wine over the next month or so, there's one mom and pop convenience store in Flint that's surprised they have the same thing on their shelves.  CBS 19's Amanda Roberson reports.

"Yesterday afternoon about 2:45 we got an email that said our license had been permitted," explained Craft Corner Convenience Store owner Carla Bacica. Her permit was approved exactly 30 days after she filed for a license to sell beer and wine. "Immediately the vendors started calling and asking when they could bring things in."

Bacica added word spread fast to customers too. "Last night people were coming in saying I want to be the first to buy and we did a number of sales last night." 

Sales are exactly why Bacica decided to get the permit, even though she said it's not the biggest money maker. "We always say the things we sell the most of: gas and cigarettes, you make the least amount of profit on and from what I've gathered beer and wine is the same thing. You don't make a lot of profit off of it, but it's the volume that counts."  

"We come up for lunch and sure enough they were selling it here and we bought some." It's an iced-down 30 pack for Craig Dabbs of Noonday who stopped in Craft Corner. "It's so convenient for one thing and for two, keeps me off the highway, 155, driving so far to Coffee City." 

It's been a waiting game for stores in Coffee City. Big Foot Beer Liquor and Wine spoke with CBS 19 off camera. They said they're not worried about Smith County going wet because they make their money in liquor. In fact, they only make a dollar off of every beer purchase.

But the business Bacica's gotten in the past 24 hours, she said, couldn't have come at a better time. "November, December, January, even in to February are our slowest months of the year."   
Now those months - whether from behind glass doors or the first aisle of a grocery store - are now making money, and history.

Both newly licensed retailers will have wine on the shelves tomorrow. 

Smith County commissioners approved alcohol ordinances in 2010. So rural businesses didn't have to wait to apply for their alcohol permits like Tyler businesses did, as the Tyler City Council passed its ordinances.

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission said you can track which stores have their permits every day. Click here.


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