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With the James Bond movie Spectre being released today, no time could be better to drink Bollinger. The most suave spy in the world has been sipping on Bollinger since Moonraker in 1979. While we can’t all drive a fully loaded, customized machine gun having Aston Martin, we certainly can chill down a bottle of Bolli! The 2004 Bollinger "Grande Année" Brut Champagne ($109) is as good as Champagne gets; all barrel fermented and full of masculine, Pinot Noir power and high class elegance. We even have a few bottles of the limited 2009 Bollinger "James Bond 007" Brut Champagne ($195) in stock for the diehard fan of Bond & Champagne!

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We host regular weekly and Saturday wine tastings in each K&L location.

For the complete calendar, including lineups and additional details related to our events, visit our K&L Local Events on or follow us on Facebook.  


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>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

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Restaurant Corkage

Wonderfully provocative article in the San Francisco Chronicle last thursday on restaurant corkage. This is a hot button issue for wine savvy diners, and your piece exposes the flaws and attitudes with regards to wine markups. While I don't agree with Pizzeria Delfina's policy not allowing diners to bring in their own wine, the restaurant has created a solid and inexpensive list. Any diner should be thrilled with this situation. However, Delfina's Stoll says "What if you collected fine tablecloths... so you wanted to bring one in to eat off of?" At my restaurant I would ask my customer "On which table you would like me to drape it?" Richard Reddington states that "I have investors that I need and want to pay back. How do I make up the profit?" Let me guess: exorbitant corkage and high wine prices? More Reddington: "When you write a budget, you think wine is going to represent a big chunk of your revenue. When it doesn't, the numbers don't make sense." "(Corkage) really undercuts our business model." Sounds like you botched the business model, Richard. Don't make it the diner's problem. Bobby Stuckey of the French Laundry says corkage is only beneficial to people with a lot of money and not beneficial to the rest of us. When I look at a restaurant wine list and see Edna Valley Vineyards Chardonnay for 35 bucks, corkage is only for rich people? Ronn Wiegand says that the markup of wine in restaurants is the same as the food. Great, so the diner pays 200 to 300 percent of the cost on food, and the restaurant says that it can't make a profit unless the same markup is used for wine? Hmmm. Restaurants CAN offer mature wine. They do not have to cellar the wine for years and charge prohibitive pricing. Some wholesalers offer older vintages that can be ordered and shipped within a day or two. So strike that argument. Reddington again: "All that corkage really covers is the 12 glasses that get ruined every night." "We broke a $100 decanter the other night, and there's your corkage." You broke a decanter, and that is justification for charging astronomical corkage fees? Not great customer service. That's right, customer. Restaurants are in the food SERVICE business. On the flip side, the 'BYO' advice listed in the article is golden. Diners, don't bring wine that a restaurant has on its list. And if you DO take advantage of corkage, you should tip as if you purchased wine off of the list. The do's and don't go both ways. And if you are put off by corkage policies, don't dine at that establishment. If you don't like commercials, don't watch T.V. Anyone out there feel the same? Differently? I'd love to hear your comments. And don't worry, I'm not really this cranky. I wrote the above as a letter to the editor but decided it was too harsh. It still is- but my feelings about this issue still strongly favour a corkage policy and a fiscally responsible wine list. --Joe Zugelder

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