Nos conseils aux professionnels - Comment former ses serveurs à la vente et au service de vin ? - Les Grappes

How do you train your waiters to sell and serve wine?

The secret of success of a good establishment would undoubtedly be an impeccable service. Indeed, your waiters are the only intermediary between your products and the customers. As far as the dishes are concerned, but also as far as the wines are concerned, your waiters must be irreproachable as far as service is concerned. Let's not forget that wine service is the ultimate mediation between producers, merchants, restaurateurs and consumers. Les Grappes therefore offers you through this article some tips to train your waiters to sell and serve wine. What a great way to improve the service in your establishment!

The waiter is also a salesman

To improve your service, and thus promote your products, encourage your waiters to advertise your wines with care.
Indeed, their job is to suggest wines to customers, to convince them of the value of the wines in your cellar. It is also up to the waiter to make original proposals to his customers: he can promote rare or original products, in order to increase the sale of these wines. The waiter can give advice or details about the wines offered. To do this, they must identify the customer's needs, but also make them want to.
To do this, they must know boththe wine list and the food list in order to be able to suggestfood and wine pairings. You can also propose a selection of wines on a slate, which the waiter will rent to his customers. Also, your waiters must be able to present the wines of the list, to praise their merits, to increase the chances of sale.

That's why he must be aware of the dishes of the day, the changes in stock...

It is therefore up to the waiter to advertise the products of your establishment. It is not only his mastery but also his taste that he must show in front of the table: he must persuade the customers and show his taste for oenology. Indeed, a waiter must master the codes, and will be better if he is passionate about it. Thus, the art of wine making, notably the choice of grape varieties, the harvest, the origin of the wine and the particularities of the taste should have no secret for him.

Careful presentation

Secondly, the waiter must be well versed in the presentation of wine products, i.e. he must take care of the appearance and the service of the products. Here are the unconditional ones of the service:

The delivery of the bottle as well as itsopening at the table must be mastered. The bottle must be presented to the table. Also, great attention must be paid to the choice of glasses. These vary according to the wine served.
To help you in this part, we suggest you to refer to this article intended for the service of wines in the restaurant:
How to serve wine in a restaurant

Next, the temperature at which the wine is served must be respected. You have to make sure that the bottle keeps an ideal temperature for serving, by modulating it for example with ice trays. Tip: see our article onwine serving temperature!

Serving the wine

After the opening of the bottle, comes the service, which is also very codified. The service is the last step for the waiter and can be summarized in one golden rule: no empty glass.

But first of all, after opening the bottle, the waiter must make the person who ordered the wine taste it, and then wait for his agreement before serving the other guests. Be careful not to forget to serve again the one who tasted. The ladies must always be the first to be served.

To fill a glass, the waiter must be on the right of the customer, holding the bottle in his hand, taking care not to hide the label.
Then he must fill the glasses: halfway for red wines, a third for white wines. Once the wine has been served, to raise the bottle, he must rotate it above the glass. Then he should wipe the neck and serve the next customer.

The golden rules

A few last tips to perfect the service...
Always make sure to :

  • Serve the wine before the dish it accompanies,
  • Open all bottles ordered at the beginning of the service,
  • Serve more wine before clearing a dish,
  • And of course follow the service so that the glasses are never empty.

Finally, your servers must be prepared to win back customers who are dissatisfied or disappointed with the quality of the wine. This is a major issue for you, as your servers will be the storefront of the restaurant, and they are the ones who are largely responsible for retaining customers, and resolving such issues. This is one of the sales qualities that the waiter must acquire.

Marie Lecrosnier-Wittkowsky for Les Grappes

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