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Mixteco Grill, Gilt Bar, Smoque BBQ, Coast Sushi Bar, Irazu
Mixteco Grill, Gilt Bar, Smoque BBQ, Coast Sushi Bar, Irazu
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Bottoms Up: Chicago Restaurants That Don't Charge Corkage Fees

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Mixteco Grill, Gilt Bar, Smoque BBQ, Coast Sushi Bar, Irazu
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Despite the myth, corkage fees aren't illegal in Chicago. The city doesn't regulate corkage fees, so restaurant owners can charge customers whatever they want for bringing booze with them. And more places — like Goosefoot— are, as owners argue that BYOB policies cost them money spent on their wine lists. They also say corkage fees offset the cost of stemware, corkscrews and decanters. But there's still a subtle pleasure in sipping what you've brought. There are plenty of BYOBs in the city, and some offer no corkage fees on select nights. But if you don't want to be a slave to the calendar, here are your best bets where you can enjoy that cellared bottle.

Do you have any other favorite restaurants with no corkage fees? Send a note to the tipline (chicago@eater.com) or leave a comment. We'll update the list as needed.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. 42 Grams

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4662 N Broadway
Chicago, IL 60640
info@42grams.com
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This reservation-only fine dining stop in Uptown doesn't charge corkage fees

2. Bavette's Bar and Boeuf

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218 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 624-8154
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Bavette's Bar and Boeuf, and the other Hogsalt restaurants, have a unique corkage fee policy. If a customer offers a glass of wine to a neighboring table, there is no fee. However, that only applies for one bottle per two people.

3. Bistro Dre

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2965 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 697-9067
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Corkage fees are never a concern at this popular small plate brunch destination, formerly known as Flour & Water.

4. Coast Sushi Bar

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2045 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 235-5775
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The original incarnation of Coast Sushi Bar in Bucktown has no restrictions on customer's bringing in their own bottles. It's made Coast a popular birthday, first date and bachelorette party destination for more than a decade.

5. EL Ideas

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2419 West 14th Street
Chicago, IL 60608

The special prix fixe meals at EL Ideas are always daring. But chef Philip Foss' restaurant lacks a beverage program and instead relies on the customer to pair his food with whatever is to their liking.

6. Gilt Bar

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230 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 464-9544
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Gilt Bar, and the other Hogsalt restaurants, have a unique corkage fee policy. If a customer offers a glass of wine to a neighboring table, there is no fee. However, that only applies for one bottle per two people.

7. Irazu

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1865 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 252-5687
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One can't live drinking Irazu's oatmeal milkshakes alone. Management won't frown on customers bringing in some alcohol to wash down the restaurant's Costa Rican fare.

8. Mixteco Grill

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1601 W Montrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60613
(773) 868-1601
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Back in 2009, police cited the owners of Mixteco Grill for having a recently-instituted corkage fee under the seldom-followed city law. They've never tried it again, as patrons enjoy sangria, wine and other beverages at this Mexican joint.

9. Ruxbin Kitchen

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851 N Ashland Ave
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 624-8509
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Ruxbin Kitchen's low-key atmosphere is perfect for bringing your own bottles.

10. Smoque BBQ

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3800 N Pulaski Rd
Chicago, IL 60641
(773) 545-7427
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Don't let anyone ever tell you that wine doesn't pair well with barbecue. Smoque BBQ may not be the most elegant venue, but its chopped and sliced brisket could do well with a sip of wine or two.

11. Tango Sur

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3763 N Southport Ave
Chicago, IL 60613
(773) 477-5466
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A nice red will pair well with the delectable Argentinian steaks at Tango Sur.

12. Wasabi

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2115 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 227-8180
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If you can brave the long waits, customers can bring up to a bottle/six pack per two people without a corkage fee.

1. 42 Grams

4662 N Broadway, Chicago, IL 60640

This reservation-only fine dining stop in Uptown doesn't charge corkage fees

4662 N Broadway
Chicago, IL 60640

2. Bavette's Bar and Boeuf

218 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60654

Bavette's Bar and Boeuf, and the other Hogsalt restaurants, have a unique corkage fee policy. If a customer offers a glass of wine to a neighboring table, there is no fee. However, that only applies for one bottle per two people.

218 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654

3. Bistro Dre

2965 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60657

Corkage fees are never a concern at this popular small plate brunch destination, formerly known as Flour & Water.

2965 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60657

4. Coast Sushi Bar

2045 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

The original incarnation of Coast Sushi Bar in Bucktown has no restrictions on customer's bringing in their own bottles. It's made Coast a popular birthday, first date and bachelorette party destination for more than a decade.

2045 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

5. EL Ideas

2419 West 14th Street, Chicago, IL 60608

The special prix fixe meals at EL Ideas are always daring. But chef Philip Foss' restaurant lacks a beverage program and instead relies on the customer to pair his food with whatever is to their liking.

2419 West 14th Street
Chicago, IL 60608

6. Gilt Bar

230 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60654

Gilt Bar, and the other Hogsalt restaurants, have a unique corkage fee policy. If a customer offers a glass of wine to a neighboring table, there is no fee. However, that only applies for one bottle per two people.

230 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654

7. Irazu

1865 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

One can't live drinking Irazu's oatmeal milkshakes alone. Management won't frown on customers bringing in some alcohol to wash down the restaurant's Costa Rican fare.

1865 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

8. Mixteco Grill

1601 W Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60613

Back in 2009, police cited the owners of Mixteco Grill for having a recently-instituted corkage fee under the seldom-followed city law. They've never tried it again, as patrons enjoy sangria, wine and other beverages at this Mexican joint.

1601 W Montrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60613

9. Ruxbin Kitchen

851 N Ashland Ave, Chicago, IL 60642

Ruxbin Kitchen's low-key atmosphere is perfect for bringing your own bottles.

851 N Ashland Ave
Chicago, IL 60642

10. Smoque BBQ

3800 N Pulaski Rd, Chicago, IL 60641

Don't let anyone ever tell you that wine doesn't pair well with barbecue. Smoque BBQ may not be the most elegant venue, but its chopped and sliced brisket could do well with a sip of wine or two.

3800 N Pulaski Rd
Chicago, IL 60641

11. Tango Sur

3763 N Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60613

A nice red will pair well with the delectable Argentinian steaks at Tango Sur.

3763 N Southport Ave
Chicago, IL 60613

12. Wasabi

2115 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

If you can brave the long waits, customers can bring up to a bottle/six pack per two people without a corkage fee.

2115 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

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