How your wine list diversity will play a crucial role in getting more customers in the new normal.
Like a good wine, a profitable wine list needs to show balance. Engineering a wine list with bins that tick the box for 100% of your customers is not an easy thing to. My latest article with The Buyer outlines how your approach to your wine list construction and team training can tip the balance for the cautious consumer post covid.
One such way is showing diversity in your wine category is a balance of styles. Balance and diversity come hand in hand. I recently spoke to a good friend of mine who runs a great wine list in Bristol. He told me that they have just listed a Macedonian range of wines at the ‘house +1’ price point on the list. Apparently, it’s doing really well. This is a good example of wine list diversity. A chance to keep things new and fresh for the customer whilst not asking them to spend much money. Discoverable and affordable.
We visit our favourite bars and restaurants for the experience. Not only to try new things, but to have our perceptions of quality pushed further than they would be at home. With this in mind, having diversity of pricing on the wine list is all important too.
I shudder when I see the ‘popular’ varietals being under-valued on a list. Malbec, Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc listed far cheaper than they should be. These wines will always sell, so let’s get them on the list a be brave with your pricing. This isn’t wine list blackmail. This is being diverse with the quality of our faster moving wines within our category. Speak to your supplier, taste every single Pinot Grigio they have to offer, find the best one you can and don’t be afraid to charge a premium for it.
As always, this will all be for nowt if the team are not behind the listings. You’ll be surprised how many guests will go for the more exotic wines of the world, or are happy to pay a premium for the favourite wine with just a small nudge out of the door from your team. Get the team behind it, and the customer will follow.
Harry Crowther, Founder & Legend