SALT LAKE CITY — Restaurants would be able to sample wine and spirits before buying them under a bill that cleared a Senate committee Wednesday.

Sen. Ross Romero, D-Salt Lake, sponsor of SB119, said businesses should have that opportunity before purchasing beverages for their establishments and to determine what goes best with the food they serve.

"It's not about consumption because a wine sample cannot be swallowed," he said.

Sampling could take place at state liquor stores, package agencies and trade shows under Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control supervision, according to the bill. Costs for the sampling would be borne by the alcohol industry.

Utah is one of two states that currently don't permit wine sampling.

Dennis Romboy

Twitter: dennisromboy