BYOB even if the restaurant sells alcohol? Some restaurants support the idea
Published Tuesday, October 18, 2016 5:55PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 18, 2016 9:25PM EDT
Call it a restaurant revolution.
Some Quebec restaurants are calling on the government to allow for a second type of liquor licence – one that would allow customers bring their own wine, even if the restaurant sells alcohol.
The notion is being met with some resistance within the industry.
Since 2011, the average Quebec household is spending 6 per cent less on restaurants than in the past, according to statistics from the Quebec Restaurant Association.
In an attempt to boost business, St-Hubert Rotisseries is pushing the idea of adding the new type of liquor licence to expand the BYOB concept.
“We are trying to find ways that we can accommodate the client so the client can choose,” said Richard Scofield, president of St-Hubert Rotisseries.
St-Hubert argues it will significantly lower the overall cost of eating out, thereby encouraging people to go to restaurants more often.
The CAQ plans to push the idea; finance critic Francois Bonnardel calls it an innovative solution for a struggling industry.
“We need to have a boost in this industry and give them the choice to have this permit,” he said.
Many restaurateurs, however, disagree, saying they believe they’ll lose out because the real profit is not in the food but in the alcohol.
“Right now, it's not easy to run a business, it really difficult. If we're going to remove also the profit, then it's going to be really hard,” said Vincenzo Papa, owner of Bacaro Pizzeria.
“If we don't do profit on alcohol sales, we'll need to do it on food sales, and for now we don't do any profit on food,” said Martin Vezina of the Quebec Restaurant Association.
Scofield disagreed, saying the industry clearly needs to be shaken up before more restaurants go under.
“The newspaper industry is evolving, the taxi industry is evolving. Well, the restaurant industry needs to evolve as well,” said Scofield.