Why don’t we have more BYOB in London?

Bring Your Own Booze. Like doggie bags, it’s a concept  that hasn’t quite made it over the pond to the shores of Ol’ Blighty. Ask for a doggie bag and you more often than not get a look like you just asked for doggie style. BYOB? It seems you might as well be asking to bring your own food to a restaurant. But why not bring your own wine for a reasonable or no corkage fee? BYOB has been around for ages in various manifestations, I found it being traced back to the 19th century on Wikipedia, the last B standing for Basket (for picnic baskets which invariably had a bottle or two nestled amongst the food, I presume). Nowadays,  the last B stands for Bottle or Booze. Of course, BYOB is an economical way to have a night out but when I worked in fine dining in the States, it was more often than not that guests brought  in their best bottles to celebrate and/or enjoy with their meals. Corkage fees varied but the average seemed to be around $20, oftentimes less and those who brought their own wine were wise to the fact that they couldn’t bring a wine that was already on the restaurant list. So, if even fine dining restaurants do it in America, why not here? London has some of the best wines in the world readily available yet unless they’re on the winelist, you’re out of luck (unless you don’t mind coughing up plenty of dough if they are on the winelist). There are however, some restaurants that allow you to BYOB in London, most of them feature Asian cuisine for some reason, those that don’t include; The Hawksmoor in Shoreditch, Cafe Anglais in Bayswater, Racine in South Ken, St. John in Farringdon, The Bloody French in Westbourne Grove and, of course, the Foodie bloggers favourite (which happens to be Asian), Tayyabs in East London. Texture in Central London is doing a special offer at the moment, waiving...

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Slide show from the LIWF, London 2009

Last week was the London International Wine Fair and to say I had a great time would be an understatement. It was 3 perfect days of discovering, tasting and non-stop talking about wine, wine and more wine. I truly never get bored of talking about wine. This is the third year I’ve gone and even though it seemed to be familiar territory, there’s always something new. I also managed to make it to the Distil show this year, which was all about the spirits. This year in particular, my wineblogger friends from Catavino and Adegga were there to promote the winebloggers conference taking place in Portugal this Autumn. Needless to say, the European Winebloggers conference stand became my home away from home during the 3 days of the fair. I met lots of great producers, tried some interesting and fabulous wines and hung out with both old and new friends. I’d like to shout out to Andrew from Spittoon, Jean from Cooksister, Bibendum Dan and Bibendum Erica, Rob (Wine conversation), German winemaker Patrick  Johner, Ryan and Gabriella Opaz (Catavino), Andre R. (Adegga), Penny from my fave Chelsea winecellar, The Bluebird, The winemaestro, and my friends from Oddbins, Eleanor and Ana and all the wonderful peeps I met at the fair this year. During the next few weeks, I’ll be posting videos from the fair so keep an eye out for interesting, informative and (I hope) entertaining videos. Until next year’s wine fair…Cheers! Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Wine tryvertising

Isn’t this a great idea! I was on openwineconsortium.com and stumbled across this on their forum. “Tryvertising” is the new catchphrase making the rounds in marketing land. Wine and tryvertising were made for each other. As a matter of fact, I think you could say that wine came up with the idea first, with cellar door tastings, etc. It just didn’t have the catchy name. A company by the name of Wineside is offering… “…both sweet and classic wines in patented, flat base glass tubes with screwtops carefully engineered to protect the wines flavour….Wineside’s collection represents a range of appellations and producers…tubes are available individually or by the box…which can be chosen to provide an introduction to a variety, year or region.” So far, the product is only available in France, natch, but I think this would be a great way to introduce people to wines that they would normally not consider. One to keep an eye on. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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