Whats The Deal With Corkage Fee At A Restaurant?

320px-Chinon_wine_bottle_cork_foil_and_corkscrewI recently came across a blog post that talked about stupid charges that restaurants pass on to their customers, and I immediately thought of CORKAGE.

For those that are unaware, Corkage or a Corkage Fee is what a restaurant charges a customer that is bringing their own bottle of wine to enjoy with their dinner. Not all restaurants allow you to bring your own bottle (BYOB), and some do.

For those that do, there is usually a “Corkage Fee” that is charged, and it’s usually just a few bucks to the waiter… mostly because you’re not going to be buying that bottle of wine from them, and their total bill will be less, and thus the tips are lower because of that.

Let me say that I GET IT, but what I don’t get is how much some of these places charge! I’ve asked a restaurant blogger at http://thebitchywaiter.com to chime in on this, so I’ll be happy to put a link to their comments when they respond.

I know this is a subjective fee, meaning that a restaurant can charge you whatever they want for this, but I often think that the fee (for what it is) is tied to any big effort, it’s getting a couple wine glasses and showing me that you can open a bottle of wine and pour it for me. Sounds easy right? Well, not to be a jerk, maybe there is more to it, or I don’t have the right perspective. I’ll find out more soon, and of course update here when appropriate.

But in the meantime, how much is ok for Corkage? $5? $10, $15? I’ve seen some charge as much as $50, and for what? Anything above $15 clearly is a slap in the face towards being economical, so what gives?

If a bottle of good wine costs more than $10, and I’m bringing it to a restaurant, I guess that $15 on top of my $10 is ok to make this economical.. because most bottles of wine start at $30 or more, so if you start paying more, you’re screwed right?

What do you think? How much have you paid for Corkage?

By Louis Wing

About Louis Wing 68 Articles
I talk about this, that, and the other stuff. I have to admit I may ramble on and on... but I am usually driving to a point. Educated and street-smart, I like my beats downtempo. Read more about Louis Wing

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