Check, Please!

Q: Friends were recently discussing how much fun it is to go to restaurants that allow you to bring in your own wine and beer. Are there any places like that in Denver?

A: Either your buddies are from out of state or they frequent local eateries that are run by scofflaws. Two state laws address this topic, and you're damned if you do, either way: It's illegal to drink alcohol in a restaurant that doesn't have a liquor license (that's essentially drinking in public, a big no-no), and it's illegal to bring alcohol into a restaurant that does have a liquor license. So while diners in more drinker-friendly states can bring their own handpicked $12 bottle of vino and pay a few bucks as a corkage fee, in Colorado we get to settle for whatever the restaurant selects and then pay the 200 to 300 percent markup. Not surprisingly, these laws are periodically challenged, but the restaurant industry has some very powerful lobbyists.

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Kyle Wagner
Contact: Kyle Wagner