Drinkers Rejoice: BYOB Law Approved for Vancouver Restaurants

Photo credit: derekGavey | Flickr

For diners in Vancouver who enjoy a spot of wine with their meal, there’s reason to celebrate.

New liquor laws were announced earlier this week that allow patrons throughout the province to bring their own bottle of wine to participating restaurants.  BC follows Ontario, Alberta, Quebec and six other provinces in allowing BYOW (that’s short for Bring Your Own Wine).

This comes as good news to diners who prefer not to be limited to restaurant wine lists.  The impact on your bill at the end of the night, however, may not necessarily be as dramatic as you think.

Participating restaurants will be setting their own corkage fee – a surcharge of anywhere from $0 to upward of $25 a bottle for opening and serving your wine.  The average corkage fee across Canada is around $10-$15 a bottle.

Still, it’s conceivable that the new BYOW rules could end up shaving at least a few bucks off the drinks tab by the end of the night.  At many local restaurants, the least expensive bottle of wine featured on the menu can be $30 or more.

Photo credit: Martin Cathrae | Flickr

It’s also likely that restaurants will begin offering low or no corkage fees as promotions in order to lure clientele through the door.  Keep your eye out for special promos midweek and during the slower post-holiday season in the winter.

I haven’t been able to find a list of participating Vancouver restaurants yet, but the new laws were just announced this week.  Rogue Kitchen & Wetbar says that their corkage fees would probably be in the $20-$25 neighbourhood, according to a recent Vancouver Sun article.  Considering that they charge a flat mark-up of $20 per bottle, this wouldn’t represent any cost savings.

Anyone know of BYOW restaurants in Vancouver? Please let us know below (with corkage fee, if possible). 

Want more updates on Vancouver and beyond?  Follow me on Twitter @RemyScalza

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6 Responses to Drinkers Rejoice: BYOB Law Approved for Vancouver Restaurants

  1. alex

    It should be legal to drink a beer on the street, I don’t care about this wine thing, in Vancouver it will be expensive anyways. It’s ridiculous how much we pay for alcohol.

  2. Margit

    I know it’s not Vancouver, but Restaurant 62 in Abbotsford has just announced they will have BYOW–at $25 corkage fee.

  3. Jean

    Corkage fees are ridiculous. This program is a joke. Fees are more expensive than the wine I drink

  4. Erick

    Who lobbied for this? Certainly not the restaurants that have extensive wine inventories and/or employ a sommelier.

  5. Victoria

    Fray Restaurant on Fraser is doing the whole byob thing for wine. Their corkage fee is only $5.

  6. Stephen B

    check out this site for corkage fees in Vancouver.