There are several ugly truths about the operations of restaurants that all stem from the fact that profit margins on food are small. Restaurants pass their staffing costs onto diners with the understanding that customers will tip their servers 20 percent. (Europeans think this is nuts, BTW.) Also, in restaurants, the price of a bottle of wine is often double or triple what the restaurants pay their distributors. Meanwhile, wines-by-the-glass are priced at even higher multiples of the wholesale cost.
So how can you deprive your favorite restaurant of its necessary profits? You can start by hitting these two local spots. Both restaurants are offering a Wednesday-night-only deal, where they will waive their usual “corkage fee,” which is employed to dissuade cheapskates like you from bringing your own. Of course, if you are a true cheapskate, you will rock on in with your jug-o-swill and never heed the oenophile showoffs that use this opportunity to publicize the excellence of their cellars.
Plates in Larchmont was the first to offer what it calls “(Your) Wine Wednesdays.” The site promises that Plates will “decant, handle, pour, and accommodate the needs of the vintage.” Which sounds like code for “don’t bring in anything too crappy.”
Bistro Rollin in Pelham that you reserve ahead for its Wednesday deal, which waives the restaurant’s usual $15 corkage fee for wine-toting patrons. The offer cannot be combined with Bistro Rollin’s prix-fixe dinners, and must be partnered instead with à la carte choices. The restaurant will decant the wine and provide glasses.