WHY THE CONSUMER FOCUS ON FAMILIAR WINES NOW PRESENTS OUR WINE LISTS WITH OPPORTUNITY

How we need to focus on lesser known regions to get our customers excited again

During lockdown I was bored. Yes, of course bored for the obvious reasons, but also bored of going to the same couple of supermarkets, and looking at the same wines all the time.

Sure, I invested in the odd case here and there, but that’s not very economical if you’re not working properly. I don’t mean to poo-poo the wine aisle. In fact, I made a point of running two Supermarket Series’ that highlighted the best wines to taste off the supermarket shelves and there really is some good stuff (check out my Instagram). Perhaps what I really missed was that on-trade, face to face experience I love with a bartender or server, naturally. 

My last post touched on the idea of the ‘trauma’ mindset, and how the trials and tribulations of covid has put many of us in a ravine of self-preservation. When this happens, we do two things. 1) Focus on the more familiar products we can easily relate to. 2) Spend more on them. 

So here is the opportunity. Now that Freedom Day has come and gone, people are hitting the town again. And guess what, whether they know it or not, they are bored too. Bored of drinking the same old same old they have been buying off the shelf through a trifecta of lockdowns. Now is the time to get them drinking new things. If they want the wine list warriors that have been keeping your menu afloat for the last decade, fine. But make sure you are strategic with it. 

Now is the chance to get their juices going by showing them some of the lesser known, exciting, up and coming regions of the world. There are amazing value examples to be found in the likes of Romania, Bulgaria and Slovenia, for example. If we can show the customer new wines, if we can take them on a road of discovery, that is the biggest possible upsell any of us can hope for.  

Look to help your customers drink different now that they are allowed out again. It’s the first step in growing average spend and working towards a modern, profitable wine category. 

Cheers

Harry Crowther

Founder & Legend