Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Wine Tasting Tips

When running an in-store wine tasting, there are a few little things that can turn an average tasting into a very successful one.

First, give the customer some reading material. Nothing is more frustrating that not knowing what your tasting or waiting to taste something you have had a million times. A print out of all the wines being sampled with some basic information will go along way to getting your customers to the tasting tables they are most interested in.

Second, must have water. Each table should always have water available for cleaning of the glass or the tasters pallet. As the event goes on, water typically becomes hard to find and it is toward the end of the tasting when it is needed the most.

Third, food is always nice. After tasting 10 or so Cab's, a taster might like some bread, cheese, or crackers to clear the taste buds for some more wine tasting. It is even better if you can have a local restaurant sponsor your next tasting and bring in some samples of their menu. Everyone likes free food after all.

Last and certainly not least, make purchasing the wine easy and hassle-free. This is the one that most store owners overlook and it can make the biggest difference in the amount of wine each taster purchases. The best system I have seen is done with "runners" and numbered dots so that when you are ready to check out, they have all of your wine ready for you at the register. Never make the customer walk around picking out bottles of wine after 2+ hours of tasting. They will certainly leave with less wine then if you organized it for them.

The Consumer's Corner is always available to help you optimize your next in-store tasting and our fee of a couple bottles of wine is quite reasonable.

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