It’s a growing trend. As the recession continues, more and more restaurants are offering BYO – Bring Your Own drinks. It’s brilliant for cash-strapped food lovers because it helps cut the cost of the most expensive part of eating out, the wine bit.
There’s a splendid French restaurant in a village near us, run by a lovely French husband and wife team, and the food is absolutely superb. To die for! But with a small bottle of cider at £6 if you buy it in the restaurant itself and every bottle of wine costing more than a tenner – often a huge amount more – it’s a costly affair.
Thankfully they let you bring your own drinks if you like, which makes eating out there much more affordable. As a result we treat ourselves at least once a month, picking up a couple of bottles of premium cider from the Co-Op down the road for between £2 and £3 each to take with us.
If your favourite restaurant doesn’t advertise BYO, you can always ask. Things are tough for restaurants too and they might prefer to have you eat there and bring your own drink than go somewhere else or not eat out at all.
How to identify BYO eateries? Tripadvisor.co.uk is a good place to start. As are local online business directories and restaurant directories. There are also specialist listings at places like www.winepages.com, Yell.com and www.studentbeans.com, all of which feature lists of and listings for local BYO eateries. Is there one in your area? try searching Google and see.