Maximizing Profits with a Wine Serving System

Bars and restaurants must minimize waste to maximize profits. Wine sales can account for 18-25% of sales in a sit down restaurant, especially in fine dining establishments. Appealing to wine enthusiasts with a variety of quality wines by the glass can bring loyal, repeat customers. Customers who enjoy a glass of wine tend to dine longer, ordering appetizers and desserts in addition to the entrée.

Better wines will appeal to some of your customers but they may not have the turn-over of lower priced options. To get the most of your wine products, you can use a wine serving system that preserves the wine by preventing oxidation. Wine serving systems can also dispense precise portions facilitating the maximum return of each bottle of wine. There is no over-pouring and no waste. Opened bottles can be preserved for 2-4 weeks.

Veritas Wine Bar on Alexander Street in downtown Rochester recently invested in a system and has been offering high end wines by the glass.  This has certainly raised the bar for other establishments catering to local wine enthusiasts.

Let’s look at how you could price a high end wine offering for maximum profitability.

Wine rating 94.  Wholesale price for a bottle of wine is $30. A 300% target markup means retail sales should bring revenues of $90.

Pricing Strategy:

  • 3oz $15
  • 5oz $18
  • 8oz $23
  • ½ Bottle $50
  • Bottle $90

Offering different size pours can increase sales of your higher priced wines.  For a cost-conscious wine enthusiast, she might splurge $15 to try a glass, but not $90 for the bottle or $50 for a half-bottle.

Some wine serving systems allow variable pour sizes, serving temperature control, and integration with POS systems. Investing in technology can provide excellent ROI.

If your establishment is using a wine dispensing system, we’d like to hear about your experience and recommendations for others.  Is it working?  How long until you’ve made your investment in the technology back?