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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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42 Grams

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

Bavette's Bar and Boeuf

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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.

Bistro Dre

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

Coast Sushi Bar

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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.

EL Ideas

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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.

Gilt Bar

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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.

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.

Mixteco Grill

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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.

Ruxbin Kitchen

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

Smoque BBQ

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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.

Tango Sur

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

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

42 Grams

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

Bavette's Bar and Boeuf

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.

Bistro Dre

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

Coast Sushi Bar

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.

EL Ideas

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.

Gilt Bar

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.

Irazu

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.

Mixteco Grill

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.

Ruxbin Kitchen

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

Smoque BBQ

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.

Tango Sur

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

Wasabi

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

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