On the “wine” page over at Sotto in Los Angeles, where I curate the wine list, there’s a link that allows guests to email me their questions. They mostly write to ask if we allow corkage…
Date: Mar 9, 2012 8:17 PM
To: Jeremy Parzen
Subject: Do you have beer?
We’re looking forward to our dinner at Sotto tomorrow evening, but I had two questions.
First, do you have any beers available?
Second, do you have a corkage fee if we can’t live without our California wine?
From: Jeremy Parzen
Date: March 10, 2012 8:20 AM
Subject: Re: Do you have beer?
Hi A., thanks so much for your interest in Sotto.
We do have beer available, yes.
And corkage is $25 per bottle with a 2 bottle max.
We also include Californian wine on our last — all by Natural winemakers (i.e., chemical-free farming, spontaneous fermentation via native yeast, and low sulfuring).
Here are a few great articles on the etiquette of corkage, one by Lettie Teague and another by a northern Californian connoisseur.
We have roughly 15-20 wines by the glass on any given day: your server will be happy to offer you a taste of any of them (and they are all available by the bottle).
I kindly ask you to consider that there is a reason why we have chosen the wines for our list: they pair exceedingly well with our chefs’ food. And they express our gastronomic aesthetic.
Please ask for the wine captain tonight. His name is Rory and he will be more than happy to find you a bottle that suits your taste and expectations.
And if truly you can find no wine from my selection of Southern Italian and Natural Californian, please feel free to take advantage of the corkage policy (although we hope that corkage will be reserved for unique, rare, and/or older vintages of special wines).
Thanks again and best wishes, Jeremy