I arrived at this Zizzi to join 4 friends and a toddler who were eating before a concert at the brighton centre. I arrived later than planned and they had already ordered food.
I perched on the edge of the table with them and asked for a glass of wine. To my surprise I was told I couldn't order a drink without food as it was "against their licence". Given that the restaurant was half empty (it was Monday) and we were a group of people in our mid to late thirties, I found it rather offensive that a) I was expected to believe this nonsense about their licence and b) I was being treated like a child.
This policy is clearly an attempt to sell more food but as I didn't have time to eat it seemed unnecessary to penalise me for this. I asked to see the manager who eventually allowed a friend to order a glass of wine which I then drank.
I won't be visiting a Zizzi again though as I'm sick and tired of chain restaurants treating customers in an arrogant, irrational way, with no flexibility or discretion used.