November 15, 2019
For bars and pubs pouring wine by the glass, inventory discrepancies is pretty much accepted as a wine whinge, par for the course. Luckily it doesn’t have to be like this.
October 12, 2018
Before you know it, the silly season will have begun, and you’ll be left wondering what you’re going to serve your thirsty friends and guests for those all-day celebrations. Enter the low Alcohol by Volume (ABV) drink
August 06, 2018
But what about cocktails? You may be surprised to learn there's more to mixed drinks than aperitifs and digestifs!
March 17, 2016
We all hate it!
Visit a bar or restaurant, order a glass of wine, receive it, look and think... "The tides out!"
Everyday tens of millions of consumers are faced with the horrible feeling they've been ripped off!
Whether it's true or not that's not the point, it's the perception which counts.
In the US consumers are fairly vocal when short changed saying something, elsewhere consumers may be more polite!
Imagine as a bar or restaurant owner if a silent majority think they're being ripped off. How will this potentially impact on long term name, reputation and profitability?
Much of the issue resides with the business and not the guests, particularly when the house wine serve policy is not advertised on menus.
In some countries a serving of wine is prescribed by law, in most it's notional, meaning some operators possibly use confusion to negative advantage.
To address the issue we suggest honesty and transparency to assuage customers questioning their serving.
When confronted with a questioning customer some will just top up a wine glass to silence the dissatisfied guest, but really couldn't this be mostly avoided if the serve policy was upfront for all to see!
Please just define and advertise your serve policy… everyone wins!
February 03, 2016
The rise and rise of single country or region dominated bar specialists offering only products produced sourced from that source have blossomed around the world.
Barring spirits produced from outside a territory in a sense becomes a form of Spirits Chauvinism, which we can define as a "biased devotion to any group, territory or region produced and sourced spirit."
There’s nothing inherently bad about Spirits Chauvinism, in fact to the contrary in most cases it reflects the renaissance of spirits distilling, enabled by educated consumers.
The USA, UK, Italy and Spain are some notable countries where established single sourced regions or territory spirits (or wines for that matter) are available in exclusive bars or bottle shops, only serving from that territory.
A recent visit to Melbourne revealed what we believe is the first Australian bar sourcing and selling only Australian produced spirit, wine, cider and beer. Called Bad Frankies, this eponymous liquor locker offers an unbelievable 200 plus range of liquor SKU’s excluding locally produced craft beers and all the other good things.
With a population of about 24 million, it’s was inconceivable just 5 years ago that Australia could ever produce such an incredible range of spirits from as many producers!
The micro distilling and brewing movement has produced more and more nuanced or otherwise producers, searching for their special niche or chunk of someone else’s pie. Throw in the other disruptors - beer and cider makers turning their hands to spirits and there you have an explosion of new world choices.
One could imagine that the ever growing number of producers/brands will create “wine paralysis” effect whereby too many different offerings within the same category creates potential consumer confusion, where the final default position could be based on familiar "mass" brand.
How will potential consumer paralysis be turned into positive outcome? Your guess is as good as ours!
July 16, 2015
“Am I getting as much as I’ve paid for?”
That’s the question many consumers seem to ponder when drinking wine at a bar or restaurant — and rightly so. How does a consumer know when they are receiving the correct volume serve?
With a mixed drink, value for a customer is simple: a jigger is filled and a shot is measured, but in wine there lies confusion. Consumers are constantly faced with a huge variety of wine glasses, and almost every glass manufacturer has a different idea on what the volume capacity should be for each.
Head into a restaurant using a smaller sized glass and it may be filled to the brim, but visit a venue using a larger volume glass, and a the serve is just a quarter of the way up the glass.
While we in hospitality may easily spot even small variations in bowl size, the communication is not as clear for most sitting at the table.
With the exception of certain European countries where it's the law to serve wine in consistent volumes mentioned on menus and signage, other markets (such as the US, Canada, Australia and many Asian countries) have no obligation to advertise or even advise what a serve entails.
Some venues use glassware with white lines or etchings (called plimsoll lines) to help determine when a correct serving of wine is poured, however consumers are still largely kept in the dark as to what quantifiable amount that measure actually is.
Though plimsoll lines may be better than nothing, they are still at best an estimate of where a designated volume line should be. In many instances the correct volume serves for each category can vary quite significantly – 120mL, 90mL and 60mL, which is the line delineating? Add in Champagne, fortified, and desert wines and additional classifications only further the complexity.
If a customer goes into a supermarket and buys a bag of grapes, they’ll be charged by the standardized weight of the grapes, but ironically, ask to be served the liquid from grapes in a wine bar and the calculated cost is treated very differently.
In an age of transparency, accountability and expectation there is a call for the “glass of wine” to become more tangibly understood. Is it time for wine serves to be standardized and measured just like their spirited brothers? In short, yes.
Consumers have a right and expectation: what is paid for is exactly what they should be getting by volume.
September 10, 2014
Provenance is the event horizon authenticating a product’s journey from start to finish.
History, heritage, pedigree; serve as the assurance to guarantee consumers favourable experiences.
With consumers increasingly becoming more curious about health impacts of food and drink, will more attention flow towards greater product transparency...?
The WHERE (it’s from) will become less important than the WHAT (it’s made of!)
Grab any soft drink can, beer bottle and most packaged food, flip it around to discover a long list of chemical ingredients. Everything is there to be seen from how much sugar, fat, preservatives etc. etc. is used.
The broader thought: informed consumers make better decisions!
If you’ve got an allergy, a health issue.... diabetes, heart disease, weight or cholesterol issues: read a product’s “discovery label” to decide whether that product may have harmful impacts!
Taking this thought one step further: will activist consumers make demands on regulators to enforce stringent labelling transparency on more product categories?In the not too distant future, could pressure be forced on the Wine industry to declare contents and chemical composition of Wine? What would the spill-over effects be on the Spirit industry?
Under these circumstances can the most pure Spirit brands still advertise as being the most pure, the most natural if a chemical analysis is forced onto its outer packaging.
Could new Prohibitionists (the anti-liquor lobby) force greater alcohol restrictions and higher taxes in the pursuit of their self-righteousness?
Here’s a thought: governments (in a democracy) require Legislation to restrict or prohibit things, however it’s the public service at the behest of Government who can proscribe regulations (declaring something to be or not to be) bypassing the legislative process and public scrutiny!
When the day comes for the Wine and Spirits industry to become label transparent, marketing fundamentals relied upon for hundreds of years will also change from amazing storytelling, mystique, provenance and pedigree to that of plain old cardboard facts?