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Bringing Wine to a Restaurant


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Bringing Wine to a Restaurant

Willy Wilson | Feb 23, 2003 12:37 PM

I have a cellar with some outstanding wines in it. These bottles would cost hundreds of dollars in a restaurant (example: 1990 Stag's Leap Cask 23). When I ask Boston restaurants whether I can bring the wine and pay a corkage fee, they unanimously refuse and claim health department regulations disallow it.

I am intensely skeptical of this explanation. What could possibly be unhealthful about bringing your own wine? I'm thinking that it's the restaurants being greedy. I once convinced Rialto in Cambridge to let me bring my wine and charge $25 to open it, but that's the only exception. (Unfortunately, the food really wasn't all that good.)

Anyone have anything to say about this? I'm perfectly willing to pay a corkage charge, so it's not as if I want them to do this for free. In Europe, there's no problem bringing your wine to most places. Is this just another example of Boston's provincialism?

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