Foodie Friday! I don’t know about you but I enjoy a glass of wine with my meals when I dine out. Unfortunately, there is no faster way to run up a restaurant bill than to order wine. I’m pretty familiar with many of the better low-cost wines from around the world and I tend to seek them out when I’m dining out. Usually they cost anywhere from 2 to 3 times what I know I would pay at retail.
This sets up a classic problem. Restaurants make a good amount of profit on selling wine and liquor and I certainly don’t begrudge them that. I would rather, however, pay them a lot for a really great dish that I know I can’t possibly make at home or for spectacular service. Paying $35 for a $12 bottle offends me, frankly. The restaurant’s priorities are out of sync with mine and that’s never good in any business. As a result I (and a number of my wine-loving friends) have made it a habit to seek out BYOB restaurants. We bring our own wine and spend our money on food. That’s a missed profit opportunity for the establishment, especially since we avoid “corkage” charges religiously.
Lately, quite a few nearby restaurants have done a very smart thing. On what are their slow nights they offer half-price bottles. Has this enticed us out on a Wednesday night? Yes it has. Which points to how we all need to solve business problems no matter what our business.
In this case the restaurant is selling the wine at a small markup, nothing like the 100%+ they usually charge. More importantly, they have more covers on slow nights, and their overhead doesn’t change if they restaurant is full or empty. As a customer I think of it as a big win, and going out Monday or Wednesday is fine with me, especially since it is generally slower, the service is better, and the kitchen usually more attentive. I might even buy a much better bottle than usual which helps the turn over the wine stock or order an additional dish. In other words, it’s a big win for everyone.
Isn’t that how every business dilemma need to be resolved?