Having so many wines also means Zanitsch can offer vinos by the bottle ranging from $24 to north of $5,000. On average, wine costing $80 to $150 is the comfortable range for most people, but he has noticed that over the past five years consumers are willing to spend more.
Zanitsch knew he wanted wine to be integral to his restaurant, having worked in Napa Valley and in a retail wine shop beforehand. “People know us for our wine and we started doing wine dinners with wine makers the month we opened and we continue them to this day, monthly. I don’t even advertise them and they sell out in an afternoon.”
Darren Roach, a partner at Queenstown Public House, likes offering a limited selection of wines to his guests.
“It makes life easier for the customers. We have something to pair with every dish and something for every taste, but we don’t overwhelm them with choices,” he says.
It also makes it simpler for his staff to learn the wines and it makes inventory much easier. “If I had a lot of wines on a list, it would take a long time to sell those wines. We’d have a lot of money in inventory so it would sit there.”
Roach and his partners are very critical of the 20 wines that make it onto their list. Because of this, they don’t change the offerings very often. Guests like coming back to find a wine they loved the previous time they dined, he says.