Bubbly time: If you ever wanted to buy Dom Perignon in Beijing…

I like Champagne but when I think of how many good cocktails or beers I can get for the average price of a bottle of Moet in Beijing, especially given that 48 percent in tariffs and taxes, I find it the rare occasion when spending on bubbly is worth it.

But there are exceptions. And the happy hour deal that starts in March and goes through April at relatively new steakhouse Flamme looks like one of them. Flamme is the first restaurant in what is hoped to be a major chain in China, backed by major food processing company Simplot, and already has a half-price happy hour on cocktails, beer, and wine by the glass that ranks among the best in town given. Come March, the happy hour will go from 3 PM to 7:30 PM and also include bottled wine.

The point: This includes Dom Perignon (1999, I believe) and is the best such deal I have seen, with a RMB2200 bottle going for RMB1100. Yes, many people will find that expensive but if Dom Perignon is something you always wanted to try, now is a good time to  get a group together and split a bottle.

A quick look at the wine list shows some other good deals, including Ridge Mountains Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 at rmb475 (regular: rmb950) and two wines from Hewitson, Gun Metal Riesling 2008 and “Miss Harry” Grenache, Shiraz, and Mourvedre at RMB215 (regular: rmb430).

The wine-by-the-bottle deal starts March 1…

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