Holiday Weeked ALERT: The #1 thing your tasting room staff needs to be doing (hint: it’s not selling your wines)

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“What? Of course my tasting room staff needs to be selling wine!! She’s crazy…”

I can hear this in my head as I’m typing, but stick with me.

Your tasting room, or even by appointment only experiences, are excellent ways to introduce people to your story, your wines, YOUR special experience that no one else can replicate. Your winery tasting room is  a place to connect, to learn and to enjoy. It is most definitely a place to be introduced to your new favorite wine BUT the number ONE thing that you or your staff needs to be doing??

Getting each and every person’s contact information for your database.

I cannot stress enough that this should be the top priority for anyone that interacts with customers coming into your winery.


Because cultivating your database and using it to consistently communicate with your customers in an authentic and genuine way is the BEST way to increase direct to consumer sales.

You can assume four things when someone walks into your tasting room or winery:

1. They have an interest in wine.

2. They have a specific interest in YOUR wine.

3. They want to learn more about your wine.

4. They are (highly probable) interested in buying your wine.

If you give your customers an amazing experience, making them a part of your story and history, during the tasting room experience, I guarantee they are going to want that relationship to continue.

So, why would you let it just be a one-time interaction?

I believe that identifying the how’s and why’s of gathering a guests contact information needs to be addressed as the FIRST STEPS of tasting room training and at the top of the list of priorities for how they approach a guests visit (along with taking the tasting fees, pouring & educating on the wine, wine club presentation and asking for the sale).

There are many ways to capture a guest’s information: guest books, at point of sale, ipads….but it really isn’t the modality that is important. The most important thing is that this is initiated and controlled by the staff in a genuine and authentic way.

Capturing guests contact information seems like a small detail but it can be HUGE in the area of growth for a winery or any business.

You had them a “hello” (and a taste of your fabulous, sexy wines!), it’s up to you to keep the relationship going.

Now I want to hear from you! How do you currently capture your customer’s information? How will you take action TODAY and start capturing your valuable customers information?

Please leave a comment below and let us know.


Raising a glass to your success this holiday weekend!

Weekly Wine Feature

 What’s in my glass?


Ahhh, Muscadet!

I LOVE Muscadet. I was introduced to Muscadet in the Fall of 2011 during a visit to a fantastic wine shop in Portland, Oregon, called Oregon Wines on Broadway. I wandered in on rainy (shocking!) afternoon, just to look around, while I was waiting for a friend, who I was meeting at the Peets Coffee shop across the street. Well, I ended up being late for that little rendevouz due to the magic of MUSCADET!

Dramatic? Yes, I know…have to have some fun here.

But, seriously…I was looking at some pinot noirs and bubbles when a big display caught my eye. There was a sign in front of the bottles that said “Seriously DELICIOUS wine”. Well, how could I pass that up? Also, this seriously delicious wine was only $11.99 a bottle. So, I grabbed two bottles to give them a go and brought them to the register. The co-owner behind the counter couldn’t have been more delighted and proceeded to chat me up about Muscadet for the next 15 minutes. I couldn’t wait to get home to try it.

Well, it was, indeed, magical. Muscadet became my obsession (for white wines, at least) for the next year. I shared it with EVERYONE. My sisters, my friends, my other blog audience, my clients. I felt like muscadet was (and still is) a bit of a secret in the United States and that does not do for me. Muscadet is meant to be shared! And at a price point of between $6.99 – $14.99 for good to awesome bottles, it’s hard not to give one go, no??

A little about Muscadet…

Muscadet is French white wine. It is made in the Loire Valley, near the city of Nantes. A light, dry wine made from 100 percent Melon de Bourgogne grapes, it is produced by the sea where the main fare is shellfish, clams and oysters and is a great pairing for those foods. Fresh, lively and extremely sippable, this wine is great on its own as an apertif or with those aforementioned foods.

Food pairings

However, in the latest issue of Food & Wine magazine (JUNE), there is an awesome article by wine editor, Ray Isle, called The Awesome Pairing Power of Muscadet, which has opened up my eyes (and caused my stomach to grumble!) to all sorts of different and unusual pairings for this tasty beverage. It’s a great read and there are all kinds of yumminess in this Food & Wine issue, as always….

So, grab a few bottles of Muscadet this holiday weekend and report back to me on what you paired it with! I’d love to hear about your wine and food adventures.

Cheers to a safe and lively holiday weekend!

2 comments on “Holiday Weeked ALERT: The #1 thing your tasting room staff needs to be doing (hint: it’s not selling your wines)

    • Hi Myrna,

      Thanks so much for your comments! So delighted to have another “muscadet-lover” here too. I’m stocking up for the weekend :)

      cheers to a great holiday!

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