Corkage – What is it?


One of the most misconcieved terms in food and beverage.

Most people think that corkage is a charge to take the cork out of a bottle of wine. People have even been known to buy the new twist top wine bottles to avoid this cost. This is incorrect.

Corkage is a service charge.
Typically, it is a charge to pay for the service staff, glassware, beverage chilling, ice and council liquor licencing etc for the service of your pre purchased wine. Wine is cheaper in a supermarket than in a restaurant. The difference is service.

Corkage cost varies from venue /caterer to venue /caterer. Some have a cost per person and some have a cost per bottle. You can expect rates between $2-$10 per person or $5-$15 per bottle. Some venues or caterers have high corkage rates to deter you from bringing your own wine and in this case it is normally cheaper to go with wine off their wine list instead.

Most venues/caterers will allow BYO wine only and not any other beverages. Some will not allow BYO wine at all. Remember that if you supply your own wine you are potentially eliminating potential sales for them.

If you do supply your own wine add the cost of the corkage to your budget and compare the costs against the venues own winelist. It may be cheaper and less fuss to get the wine directly from the venue itself.

Other Food and Beverage Tips:
Beverage Packages – Click Here
Beverage, charged on consumption – Click Here
Beverage Consumption – How much do I need? – Click Here