BYOB in Washington, D.C.

Perhaps we should thank our sputtering economy for the rise in popularity of BYOB--Bring Your Own Bottle--in Washington, D.C. It's one restaurant policy with some pretty obvious pluses. Not only does bringing your own bottle guarantee you'll be drinking something you like, it will also save you some dough--even with a corkage fee. Whether you've been waiting to dust off that special bottle of your father's Bordeaux or just hope to shave a few bucks off your dinner date bill, check out our list of restaurants where BYOB in Washington, D.C., is welcome, for free or for a fee. (Photo by Flickr user vmiramontes)

Updated: August 19, 2010

Free BYOB


Thai X-Ing

515 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001

This tiny Thai eatery does most of its business with carry-out customers, but if you're lucky enough to secure a spot--patrons call a day ahead even for takeout!--make sure to bring along your favorite bottle to compliment Mr. Taw's perfectly sauced pad thai.


Cafe Romeros

2132 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20007

Wash down a crunchy slice of bubbling mozzarella and sweet tomato sauce with a bottle of your choice. Showed up empty-handed? You won't have to go far--find Wide World of Wines across the street and Wagner's Liquor on the next block. Chow down on Romeo's quaint outdoor patio until 3am.


Clyde's of Georgetown

3236 M St NW, Washington, DC 20007

A little-known fact about this homey Georgetown institution is that for no fee (just the expectation that you tip accordingly), you may bring along your own bottle of wine. Come with the right white for your shrimp linguini or that merlot you've been saving for a hanger steak.


Charlie Palmer Steak - DC

101 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20001

The patriotic Charlie Palmer Steak--with its exclusively American wine list--also offers free corkage on American wines brought to the restaurant. Less welcome foreign wines command a $25 fee, except if brought on Free Corkage Fridays, when all wines are treated equally.


BYOB with Corkage Fee


Surfside

2444 Wisconsin Ave Nw, Washington, DC 20007

Nothing compliments Surfside's Mexican-infused beach cuisine better than a six-pack of your go-to cerveza---Dos Equis, Estrella, Corona, etc. With the convenience of Pearson's Liquor and Wine right next door, you won't mind the $5 BYO fee.


Busboys & Poets

2021 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20009

The flagship location of this restaurant-bookstore-performance hall hybrid has a full bar and wine list to accompany its Southern-minded menu but also allows patrons to bring their own. Though the spot is all about freedom of expression, corkage doesn't come gratis--expect a $15 fee for your alcoholic choice.


Lavandou Restaurant

3321 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008

Cleveland Park locals treasure this casual French bistro, as charming as Provence's real thing. Take advantage of free corkage on Monday nights, otherwise expect to pay $15 if you BYOB.


Bambu

5101 Macarthur Blvd NW, Washington, DC 20016

This clean and stylish Asian eatery features a sprawling menu of dishes from the Far East: moo shu and kung pao shrimp from China, curry and pad thai from Thailand, and sushi and sashimi from Japan. It's priced reasonably considering the portions, and a $7 corkage fee won't break the bank either.


Old Ebbitt Grill

675 15TH St NW, Washington, DC 20005

D.C.'s oldest saloon attracts throngs of hungry diners with its fabulous raw bar, noteworthy burger and carefully crafted crab-cake sandwich; a BYOB policy merely seals the deal. Be prepared to pay the $15 corkage fee.