Laws, Regulations and Annotations


Business Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2023

Alcoholic Beverage Tax Law

Business and Professions Code Provisions Relating To the Alcoholic Beverage Tax Law1

Division 2. Other Taxes
Part 14. Alcoholic Beverage Tax
Chapter 1. General Provisions and Definitions2

Section 23038

23038. "Bona fide public eating place"; "meals"; "guests." "Bona fide public eating place" means a place which is regularly and in a bona fide manner used and kept open for the serving of meals to guests for compensation and which has suitable kitchen facilities connected therewith, containing conveniences for cooking an assortment of foods which may be required for ordinary meals, the kitchen of which must be kept in a sanitary condition with the proper amount of refrigeration for keeping of food on said premises and must comply with all the regulations of the local department of health. "Meals" means the usual assortment of foods commonly ordered at various hours of the day; the service of such food and victuals only as sandwiches or salads shall not be deemed a compliance with this requirement. "Guests" shall mean persons who, during the hours when meals are regularly served therein, come to a bona fide public eating place for the purpose of obtaining, and actually order and obtain at such time, in good faith, a meal therein. Nothing in this section, however, shall be construed to require that any food be sold or purchased with any beverage.

History—Stats. 1955, p. 3284, in effect September 7, 1955, operative January 1, 1957, upon adoption of an amendment to Section 22, Article XX, California Constitution, substituted present provisions for former provisions defining hotel, restaurant, cafe, cafeteria and other public eating place.

Concession agreement.—Except as permitted by last sentence of Section 23787, a licensee under a bona fide public eating place on-sale general license may not lease or make a concession agreement under which he would in effect sublet the restaurant operations on his premises. 29 Ops. Atty. Gen. 95.

Ownership of license as evidence of ownership of connected restaurant.—The appearance of a person's name on a liquor license of a type which required him to serve food is evidence that he is the owner and operator of a restaurant adjoining the licensed premises. Farmer Bros. Co. v. Kiernan, (1957) Cal.App.2d 867.

1See Section 32002 of Revenue and Taxation Code in this volume.

2The provisions of this chapter, except as otherwise noted, were added by Stats. 1953, p. 954, in effect September 9, 1953.