In the 15th arrondissement, very close to the station, the restaurant of the Novotel Montparnasse: "La Halle Quatre", makes you travel even before getting on the train. Entering this establishment means setting foot in the South-West of France, thanks to its menu of 100% regional products. The work undertaken in the hotel a year ago has made it possible to rethink the entire catering concept. In view of the hotel's location, this new identity was naturally oriented towards typical products from the South-West regions," confides Valentin, the catering manager with whom we spoke. "We were keen to go and look for products from these regions, directly from small producers to simply offer very good products, little known but which have a real soul and character".
"For several years now, the Novotel brand has had the ambition to give a strong identity to each of its restaurants. We no longer want to be a hotel restaurant but a restaurant in its own right". In the past, everything was standardized, the Novotel de France received the same card. The choice of wines was made at the Accor headquarters. De facto, the wines were ordered from the referenced suppliers. With the change in policy, the teams in Hall Four were able to create a wine list that resembled their own, offering their customers wines that they were not used to drinking. This freedom of selection has led to the emergence of three main needs:
Representing more than 15% of sales at La Halle Quatre, wine is an element not to be neglected for the restaurant. With Les Grappes, Valentin was able to train his team very easily in the sale of the products he selected. The fact that his waiters know how to talk about the wines they offer to customers, describe the aromas and be able to direct them to simple food-wine pairings is indeed a determining factor in the sale of the bottles. Thus, having wines with singular histories and original tastes was very important to him and was decisive in his choice of supplier.
"Nowadays customers really want advice on what they eat, they ask us what goes best with the dish they have chosen, compare our different wines and look for an accompaniment, so we need a few key words".
Valentin confided to us:"I really liked the accompaniment in the selection, even more so in view of the wide choice of references available on the site. We're dealing with real experts who know the wines they offer perfectly. As soon as our needs are expressed, we are directed towards suitable references".. The selection process was very important for Valentin who, after having shared his project with the Les Grappes team, decided to work with us."I asked Emma [Les Grappes wine expert] for a selection of western wines of several types: I wanted white and red wines that were a little bit more premium. I had also told him of my desire to offer original wines to my customers and from small producers".
The opinions of community members and the technical data sheets were also a valuable and decisive help in his choice to work with Les Grappes."The site is very well done to easily find the product you want. The fact that there are notices and ratings on the references were a real plus to not make mistakes.
One of Valentin's wishes when defining the new concept of the restaurant was to highlight the work of small winemakers. Knowing and controlling the origin of the products he offers his customers is a guarantee of quality."Having wines that are not present everywhere is also very appreciable, I didn't want multinational wine companies but on the contrary small producers who offer surprising wines".. With Les Grappes PRO, Valentin has direct access to a catalogue of harvesting winegrowers, a real time-saver for him.
"We were keen to create a wine list that would suit us and that we could make our own.".
A convinced team has a direct impact on wine sales and customer satisfaction. As soon as a product is presented and "told", customers more easily make returns and comments:"People are curious, they like to be offered new products and they are sensitive to the direct approach of producers".
Valentin explains that when he presents two wines on his menu, a well-known brand and a vintage wine, consumers are more likely to discover them if they are well brought out... On La Halle's wine list you can for example find the Egiategia estate which vinifies its wines in the heart of the bay of Saint-Jean de Luz in vats 15m deep under water or the Château les Graves de Viaud which practices biodynamics in the Bordeaux region.
Build an inimitable wine list and save a lot of time when ordering.