‘Cakeage' charge increasingly common in restaurants, says survey
The practice of charging "cakeage" to restaurant customers who want to bring their own birthday cake is becoming increasingly common, especially in London.
That's according to a survey by the Sunday Times that found restaurants around London are charging up to £9 per person for arriving with their own cake.
The charge - so named because it is similar to "corkage" fees charge when customers bring their own alcohol - varies considerably between restaurants, ranging from £1.50 per head at barbecue chain Bodean's, to as much as £9 at Kaspar's Seafood Bar & Grill in London's Savoy hotel (the price equivalent to the cost of a dessert).
Meanwhile St John restaurant in London's Smithfield will charge £7.50 per person if dessert is not ordered, and some of Gordon Ramsay's restaurants, including the Savoy Grill and Maze in Mayfair charge £5.
However there were still a number of restaurants that didn't demand a cakeage fee. Chains including PizzaExpress, Byron, Wagamama, Jamie's Italian, Carluccio's and Nando's all told the paper they would not charge customers for bringing their own cake, as well as some branches of JD Wetherspoon.
The main restaurant at the Ritz also confirmed that it would not charge a fee, and when the paper asked a staff member at the bar at Claridge's, it was told: "I don't see it being a problem at all, sir…as long as it's not a five-tier cake that has to be wheeled in on a horse."