Wednesday, December 5, 2007

My New Wine List se Arrive'

Finally, after months of work the new and improved restaurant wine list is out. Today is the first day that it will be properly bound in the restaurant and updated on our web page - Feels good to have it wrapped up so that I can move on to my next wine project. This revision is what I call phase 2 - a light revision in order to make the list more interesting but is still not where I want it to be. My plan of attack is listed below -

Phase 1 - Begin bi-monthly wine training - Done
Phase 2 - Introduce improved wine list - Done
Phase 3 - Create detailed wine training manual - Going to print next week
Phase 4 - Re-design current wine list - Begun
Phase 5 - Substantially increase the wine list making it something unique and thorough

This new wine list is a much need step up which is why I didn't wait to do a complete re-build as in phase 5. Phase 5 will begin once our new wine room is finished being built. I am not sure of the time line of that because there are permits and designers involved, I never put a time line on permits. But as I said this is a great step.

The greatest change was the addition of the 8 for 28 section. This section featured at the beginning of the list offers 8 different bottles, 4 red & 4 white, for 28 dollars a piece. My idea was to allow people to purchase a bottle of wine without laboring over the idea of spending 40 - 60 dollars a bottle. For many people that is half the cost of their meal and they may not be willing to make the purchase. This way everyone can afford to buy a bottle of wine. Something that I hope will help foster an atmosphere of wine. If I can get a bottle on every table, no matter the price, then over time we will sell more wine both 28 dollar bottles and much more. Also I want to mention that these are good wines. I never promise that they will blow you away but they are the best in the category, are priced well, and enjoyable.

I have doubled the amount of dessert wines that we offer, and most importantly increased the diversity of the list. Instead of being all Napa I have begun to introduce OR, WA, Australia for whites, Spain, and different styles of varietals as well.

One wine that I am very happy with is our Sharecroppers Pinot Noir from Owen Roe in Oregon. We used to have Byron Pinot Noir from Santa Barbara, CA. When working the floor and someone would ask me for a bottle of the Byron I would politely say, "No", and lead them in another direction. Now when people ask me for a higher end Pinot I will lead them sometimes to a less expensive Pinot, the Sharecroppers, because it is that good. I have been hand selling it for a couple of weeks and we have already sold over a case. A great find.

I do apologize however because I believe the vineyard is sold out and you will be hard pressed to find it in a liquor store. But good luck, it is well worth it.

The greatest hole in the list is french wine. I do realize this and it is my starting point for phase 5. On the next edition of french listings will be about 8 time larger, I can't wait.

Please do look over my list and e-mail me with any questions and share your discoveries. I will give them a try myself and maybe include them on the next edition.

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