No good meal without a good wine. As a talented winemaker you won’t tell me otherwise, will you? Associating your best vintages with the menu of good restaurants in the area is a great opportunity to make your production well-known. But is it still wise in these times? I often say that the future of the profession is on the Internet. So why, and above all, how would you sell your wine to a restaurant owner? I reveal my strategy in this article…
Choosing THE right restaurant
Actually, I’m inviting you here to a wedding.
Indeed, if you want to sell your production to a restaurant, you have to find the one whose cuisine will pair with your wine. The one who will be able to talk about it with passion and animate the tastings. The two of you will have to know each other well and be faithful! It is a true union, in the same way that I was talking about the wine merchant as a member of your family.
Yes, it remains interesting to work with restaurateurs, as long as you don’t multiply them and don’t consider them as a profitable distribution channel. You’d be disappointed: it’s very time-consuming and not providing high margins. By the way, can you imagine yourself married to a hundred people? Exhausting!
However, working with a restaurant owner can help you develop your reputation and gain consumer recognition. To do so, you have to choose one or even a few people who are right for you. A very limited number of people. First of all, ask yourself in which place you would like to have dinner or lunch every day. Once you’ve found a nice restaurant, become one of its best customers. Chances are, the owner will start buying some of your bottles too.
One thing leading to another, you’ll become friends.
The idea is then to study how to optimize this exchange, this marriage in progress.
How to establish a rewarding partnership?
I’ve already mentioned the advantage of win-win relationships. Keeping this in mind, start by showing interest in the difficulties encountered by your favourite restaurateur. Be creative. Together, consider solutions and possibilities for joint development.
Here are a few examples:
- Every month, organise a special evening around your wines, with an adapted menu. Offer good prices to your partner, as well as a relay on your social networks. There are some simple tips to easily attract 100 people to this kind of evening, with, as a bonus, a registration system;
- Create together an ephemeral annex of the restaurant. You will set up the tables in your wine cellars or any other available place, such as a reception room whose occupancy rate would not be optimal. Guests will be welcomed there upon reservation. You will then be able to repeat the experience, a bit like a festival of good taste;
- You may also ask yourself how you can invest in the restaurant. Start by offering your partner a few bottles and pretty glasses engraved with your signature. If they are in favour, you can then take a share or host their restaurant in your vineyard. The rent would be free; it would be a good deal for both parties;
- If you’ve chosen a gourmet restaurant in the heart of Paris, you can then offer to set up a more casual annex, a bistro or wine bar on your vineyard. A kind of relocated franchise.
You can see that such a partnership can go very far. Like a marriage, it becomes a real commitment, structured for the long term. Again, it is therefore essential to choose the right restaurant owner and then to pamper them with regular events. When they are seduced, they become the best ambassador for your wine and regularly send you new customers. And vice versa. Win-win.
Would you like to combine your Premium wines with exceptional cuisine?
For more information, join us in our Club20. We use the power of the Internet and other clever tools to make it quick and easy. With us, step into the future of Premium wine!
In the meantime, stay with us on this site: I will soon explain you how to sell to an importer…