Advice Man recommends that a server must hang around explaining a wine to offer customers a better concept of what it resembles./ Picture: Shutterstock.
A couple ordered a $78 bottle of white wine that they thought “looked cool” from the description on the menu. I informed my server that it’s probably not going to be for them– it’s a natural/funky white wine and it was simply a sense from looking at them that they would not be into it. Sure enough, they said it wasn’t to their preference and asked me to substitute it. I did, with something basic and comparably priced, however am now entrusted a bottle to offer by the glass, not really easily, at $20 per glass. How do I inform somebody that I don’t believe they’ll like what they bought?
— General Manager, Los Angeles
Specifically with wine offered by the bottle, it’s a good method to offer as much information as you can about the white wine in order to help the guest make an informed decision. That details can be communicated by descriptors on the wine list or verbally by a knowledgeable server, drink supervisor or sommelier. With good communication and informed sale, you are less likely to be stuck to an open bottle as you remained in this case.As we often talk about in this column
, issues in restaurants are frequently a result of gaps in communication. Was the description on the menu inadequate for the guest to make a thoughtful selection? Or was the server inadequately trained to describe the red wine, its character, and excellent food pairings to direct the visitors towards a choice they would enjoy?Steve Wildy, founder and owner of Mad Wild White wine concurs,”Simply
about every restaurant I ever worked in has had a dish that required an additional verbal caution that wasn’t apparent from the composed menu description; remarkably spicy, heavily-seasoned, fatty cut of meat, lesser-known offal, and so on. So I would wager that even if you don’t have a group of white wine pros, your servers can fairly quickly earmark a few bottles on the list to say something along the lines of:’Simply a heads up, that’s a natural wine so it’s scrumptious and fun but likewise cloudy/quirky/funky/ cidery/very different in such a way that we discover truly interesting, however may not be for everybody,’when purchased. “By not blindly filling the order however rather taking a minute to describe the white wine, a few things
can be accomplished through much better interaction: The visitors may have the ability to be steered to a wine they would choose, resulting in a better hospitality experience and
- a satisfied guest.The operation avoids the waste and hassle of attempting to sell an open bottle by the glass.There is a chance to upsell
- (within factor ), indicating greater earnings and a higher tip.Wildy includes, “If your principle isn’t established to consist of tableside white wine discussions as part of theprogram( which many aren’t ), and you want to include natural red wine (which, in my viewpoint, you must),
then I think it’s on white wine professionals to provide as much context as possible on the menu to explain what the red wines are and how they’ll drink.”Your representatives or a red wine specialist can help you draft reliable language for your wine list.More on red wine sales and communication here.