Nos conseils aux professionnels - Comment développer ses ventes avec le vin au verre ? - Les Grappes

How to develop sales with wine by the glass?

Wine by the glass allows the customer to consume small quantities of quality wine. Consumers are turning more and more to this method of consumption because it allows access to great vintages without having to buy a bottle.

Les Grappes offers you some tips to develop your wine sales with the offer of wine by the glass. We are therefore aimed at cellar and bar managers, as well as restaurateurs, who can offer a glass of wine as an aperitif, but also to accompany a dish.

How to explain this new trend?

The sale of wine by the glass has become widespread in France since 9 out of 10 restaurants offer this type of consumption. Demand for this new type of consumption is mainly present in wine bars and restaurants at lunchtime.

This mode of consumption is profitable for the customer, who has access to great vintages at a reasonable price: indeed, the consumption of bottles can discourage by its price but also by the quantity offered. Thanks to the consumption of wine by the glass, one can avoid the interminable debate around the bottle of wine for the table at the restaurant: everyone can drink what they want. It also allows one to moderate one's consumption, therefore to drink less but better.

But also and above all, selling wine by the glass is very profitable for the seller: it increases the service flow and proves to be more profitable than offering it by the bottle. In fact, while wine consumption is tending to decrease, there is a certain revival from this practice: the customer continues to consume wine thanks to the offer of wine by the glass, thus maintaining the turnover in wine.Indeed, for the restaurateur or the wine merchant, this mode of consumption can yield more than the sale of bottles of wine, since the multiplying factors are higher.

If the formula is economical for the customers, it is also profitable for the seller.

What to drink?

It is the red wine that seems to prevail in the sale of wine by the glass. Bordeaux, wines of Provence and the Rhone Valley are popular, but also leave room for rosés in summer.
Wines by the glass are more in the mid-range: table wines or grands crus are generally served by the glass - except in high-end wine bars or restaurants.The aim is to offer accessible wines, so the grands crus would be more expensive and thus less in demand, leading to losses.

What price?

By pricing your wine list by the glass, you will understand why this practice is profitable.
For a glass of wine served in the restaurant it costs about 4 euros. For a bottle of wine, it costs between 25 and 35 euros.
The price per glass is calculated by dividing the price of the bottle à la carte by the number of glasses it contains. A margin is then added, so that sometimes, as the coefficients used to calculate the price of the bottle are high, the glass is offered at the price of the bottle at the producer's premises.
The first glass consumed thus makes the bottle profitable!

So by offering wines served by the glass, you will be able to increase and stabilize your wine sales, and then increase your turnover, if you apply reasonable and attractive prices, for a demanding clientele.

Tips for developing sales

The promotion of this type of consumption should be stepped up, as it helps to boost wine consumption. The idea is to seduce the consumer, so that he consumes and there is a real flow of wine.

To encourage the consumption of wine by the glass, you can immediately create a menu highlighting the products you serve. The idea is to offer original wines that will attract the curiosity of consumers, wines from small producers, or slightly more prestigious wines that will satisfy gourmets. Indeed, the wine most in demand by the glass is often from the middle of the range: the customer wants to drink better.

You will then have to take care of the service, in particular by presenting the bottle to the customer to establish a relationship of trust. Serve the wine at the right temperature, in the appropriate glasses. Drinking wine by the glass remains a ritual for wine lovers!

Then, you can propose formulas, which will multiply the service of wine by the glass. For example propose a glass of wine to accompany a dish, or a board. Thus you will spread the practice at the time of the meal but also of the aperitif. Emphasize then on the food and wine pairing.

Finally, apply affordable prices: the formula must also be profitable for the consumer!


However, there is an essential downside to this type of consumption, which is that of wine conservation. A bottle that is not finished in the evening risks getting airborne and losing its flavours. You can't keep an open bottle open forever, and you risk loss.
This is what can slow down the development of this way of drinking: restaurant owners are afraid of losing wine that has been open for too long by oxidation.
But this should not put you off, there are corks and efficient conservation tools, which allow a better conservation of your products.

Marie Lecrosnier-Wittkowsky for Les Grappes

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