Retail Wine

I visited Heights Chateau located on 123 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY. Heights Chateau  is a neighborhood store known for personal service, various selection of wine, value and most importantly prestige taste. The retail wine store is simple and classic with loyal customers that is led by Matthew LaSora, who is an assistant in the store that helps customers for spirit and sensibility, He gives guidance due to customers due to the  2000 wine selection as well as providing the perfect bottle at the right temperature along with the right price.

As I entered the store, I noticed that there were labels on each row of the shelf based on the countries around the world as well as labels for restricted diets. As seen in the pictures below:

I spoke with the store manager, Tony, who worked at Heights Chateau for 28 years. Tony gave recommendation of his favorite wines as well as informing me about more wines. Throughout the visit, I could tell that he knew how to upsell the wine as well as figuring out which wines to have in their store was determined through tastings, and price.

Tony continued informing me about the higher quality wines and how they were placed lying down, on its side and others were placed in the fridge. Based on what we learned in class, I believed wines should be best placed lying down on its side to moisten the cork, rather than sitting upright. Also, wine bottles should be placed in a dim-lit area so the wine would not change in temperature, taste, or growing molds.

Tony’s knowledge and excellent and friend service made the experience nice. Being in the store, learning about his store, and how to sell wine was a good experience to go through because I learned more information about the retail wine.

Although I enjoyed visiting Heights Chateau, there are some improvements that many help the wine store better. I believe some wines were misplaced and did not contain labels on some red, white and sparlings.

 

https://www.heightschateau.com/about-us.html

Leiser’s Liquiors

I went to the wine and liquors store called “Leiser’s liquors” which located in 41-30 162nd St, Flushing NY. Since I went to a historical wine liquor store, I like to provide some background of the store. Leiser’s Liquors is opened since 1947 by Lloyd Leiser Sr. on 162nd street as a single unit storefront. In 1970 the store moved to the corner of the block and expanded in 1983 and 2003. The store is large, they have over 3500 square feet of floor space and over 4500 items in the store. They are known throughout the Queens community as having the best prices and the largest selection and they are committed to offering the best possible prices on the internet. Leiser has wide selection of Red and White wine, and also they have sparkling wine and some Korean and Japanese liquors as well.

I went to Leiser’s Liquors store without calling them first. I wanted to randomly go into the store and pretend I am a stranger and unfamiliar person about wine.

When I first went into the store, I felt ‘the store is huge’ immediately. I straightly went into red wine section and started to investigate the red wines. Then immediately one person came to me and politely asked me if I need any help. So I told him “Yes, I need your help with the wines” then he replied “sure.” and asked me what kinds of wine am I looking for. I asked him what is the popular wine in the store and why, and he told me the popular wines are

Wine Name: Beringer

Country: United States

Region: California

District: Sonoma County

Grape Variety: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Vintage: 2013

 

Wine name: SIMI

Country: United States

Region: California

District: Sonoma County

Grape Variety: Merlot

Vintage: 2014

Those two he says most popular ones in the store because they are well-balanced and little acidity, and smooth. Then I told him actually I am a student of Hospitality Management and right now I am here because of my wine project, and asked him if I can take some photos of the wines. And he replied “sure” with a smile. I asked him what is your favorite wine in the store? And he pointed one wine in a shelf and that wine was,

Wine Name: Hourglass, Blueline Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

Appellation: Calistoga, Napa Valley

Varietals: 90% Cabernet, 6% Malbec, 4% Petit Verdot

Vintage: 2014

It has special oak tastes in it, and well-balanced wine and a few wines are produced. I asked him did you study wine? And he said “yes” and he told me he went to wine school called “WSET” which located in London and it is a wine specialist majored school. His name was Grey, and I really appreciated to Grey to answer all my questions kindly even the store was busy with the other customers. Then I went to look around the store, took some of the white and sparkling wines photos, and ended up getting one bottle of wine for myself.

September Wines & Spirits

The wine store I chose was September Wines & Spirits. It is located by Ludlow St and Stanton. The Place was quite small with an array of wines arranged by region.

Upon entering the place after the snow we had over a couple of days, they are still putting their new wine shipments into appropriate places. I was greeted by a gentleman named Ian. I introduced myself as a student studying hospitality management and doing an assignment for my wine class. Ian helped me throughout my questions as I was quite confused how their wine categories are almost all over the place. Nevertheless this created a unique selection.

I am not that new to wine because of my background working in restaurants and nightclubs so I have basic knowledge of wines and what I do like and don’t like.

In front of the store there is a section that they change every month. For Women’s month, they have decided to have a collection of wine offerings that are made by women. Although this is quite confusing if the owner is a woman, or the founder is but I was told that it is women that are actually making the wine.

I then came across with one of the wine they carry from Airlie vineyards. The AVA is from Willamette Valley in Oregon and the wine owner, Mary Olson is a woman, the marketing(labeling designer) Kim Swecker is a woman, the wine maker by the name Elizabeth Clark is also a woman.

I actually purchased the wine and tasted it myself. The wine is called 7, which is a blend of, you guessed it! 7 different grape varietals. I also found signs of carbonation when I poured it which bubbled more than usual. Below are my tasting notes.

Wine name: Seven
Grape Varietal: ¬†M√ľller Thurgau, Pinot gris, Riesling, Gew√ľrztraminer, Chardonnay, Pinot blanc, Muscat Ottonel.
Vintage : 2014
Appearance:  Clear, Light body
Nose:  Lemongrass, melon and hints of pear
Palate: Pineapple, Juicy and there are signs of carbonation

 

This was quite interesting for me and they also have a section for Organic Wine and Bio dynamic Wines. The prices of the wines are on the pricier end. The cheapest one I found was at the range of $13 and have seen up to a $46 a bottle for a Brunello di Montalcino.

Overall, the lay-out of the store was confusing in the beginning but the employees was quite knowledgeable in directing you to how they arrange the wines. They are also pretty helpful in recommending wines and I think the Monthly “Special” was very interesting in changing things up to bring new exciting things that will attract patrons.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kert Lasdoce

BottleRocket Wine & Spirits

The store certainly attracts the attention of potential buyers with their bold choice of color.

My retail wine store of choice is BottleRocket Wine & Spirits; located at 5 W 19th Street around the Flatiron District.

What immediately caught my attention is¬†store’s bright purple neon sign and its purple theme color. That gave me the impression of a cool, hip and trendy store.

Something I found interesting is the way they have categorized some of their selections of wine to a food pairing. Some that are shown here are for Meats, Poultry, Seafood, and different kinds of Takeout. There is also one for your value price wines.

Upon entering I noticed the different display stands. Each one can be used to look for a specific occasion wine that a customer may have in mind of purchasing. A sales associate helped answer my questions and explained to me the way the wines were assorted. Instead of being arranged by grape varietals, like most stores, the wines were alphabetically grouped by country of origin. To someone who may still be developing their palate or in need of a wine to pair for a meal, this is a helpful tool.

Once¬†familiarized with¬† the store’s¬†system of organization¬†I¬†began¬†asking¬†my list of questions.

What is the stores most prevalent demographic?
“We are a¬†neighborhood store that serves towards our local clientele.”

What kind of wines would you recommend for someone developing their palate?
“For the Reds a light to medium body is a good way to start out because of the¬† lesser amount of tannin. That being said a Grenache or a Pinot Noir from France is a good way to go. As for¬†the Whites , and aromatic Alsace or White Burgundy is a good choice as well.”

The display stand makes it easy for the consumer to identify the kinds of body the reds are. Medium bodied reads are shown to the right; Light bodied reds are shown to the left.

White wines display stand presenting their “bubbly” array of wines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At Bottlerocket they are all about wine education. Next to each selection of wine is a set of informative tasting notes and suggestive pairing options. They provide free tastings Thursday-Saturday from 5 to 8pm.

 

 

Annisa Benasseur – Heights Chateau

I visited Heights Chateau on Atlantic Avenue.

 

Firstly, the shop itself is quaint. Upon entry, it does seem a bit overwhelming, but as you peruse the aisles, you‚Äôll quickly realize there is an order in which these many bottles are arranged. The first thing you run into when you enter the doors is the checkout counter. I thought to myself ‚Äúit would probably be impossible to steal from here‚ÄĚ but I later found out that isn‚Äôt the case. The manager of 20 plus years whom I spoke with (whose name I forgot the moment I left) mentioned that, the store experiences shrinkage on spirits- specifically Grey Goose and Hennessy.

The first thing you see when you enter.

A view of the entire store.

The checkout counter was a bit dusty and cluttered by display cases of wines and some paper goods. I was told that the store doesn’t carry too many supplemental supplies to be paired with a bottle of wine simply because of lack of storage and wasting capital. Staff members have extensive wine knowledge and are able to solicit pairing suggestions to clients. There was,n however, a wicker basket full of wine openers on the checkout counter.

 

This was very interesting to see that this alternative is offered

The manager and I walked through the aisles with him pointing out to me the wines are separated by region and variety (red, white, rose). The organization of the store made sense, however, the signage was outdated and unappealing. The idea behind the paper signs are functional and great for reeling customers in and allowing them to locate wine by region of their choice. The signage is due for replacement as it is flimsy and faded. There were also paper flyers announcing the dates and times in which their distributors would be conducting tastings.

 

Some of the sparkling wines were refrigerated.

The boxed wines weren’t on the same wall units as the bottled. They were in their own smaller section near the spirits.

Heights Chateau doesn’t always offer discounts, but this is an example of what the savings would be.

While in the aisles, the manager was sure to tell me one thing I would not find is the supply of Romanee Conti (a red wine hailing from Burgundy). This wine is priced at $3000 per bottle and is kept downstairs in the basement for security purposes. Customers did have access to wines from countries including USA, France, Austria, Israel, Spain, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and more. Customers are able to find Kosher, boxed, sparkling wine, and more.

Heights Chateau has more female patrons than male. According to the shop keepers, women mostly purchase Rose and White.

Nice to put a face to the name after learning about it.

Red wines of Italy

My takeaway from the interview and walk through experience: Wine is all about perspective and is truly subjective. A $15 bottle of wine may do for me what a $3000 bottle of wine may do for someone else. This is not to say that every wine from every region will taste similarly, it’s all about preference. The appearance of this particular location doesn’t hinder any sales, as the store has an abundance of regulars. Additionally, the store manages to attracts clients in other ways like free delivery within the 5 boroughs, promotional bags (an employee chosen recommendation bag of wine bottles and a free reusable tote) and a wine of the month club. Though this may not be the case for other wine retailers, Heights Chateau’s sales and retention is not visibly influenced or affected by the ambient conditions.

 

Wine and Spirits Discount Warehouse

My family frequents the liquor whenever there a celebration to have, and with my cultural background, there is always something to celebrate. This liquor store that I visited back in February is one that we frequent often, and though I‚Äôm not of drinking age I can give my opinion that I rather favor the shop. Upon entering the store, I was able to get help right away from the staff members at the cash register who then lead me to Trueman Haskell III who is the General Manager of Wine and Spirits Discount Warehouse. He was able to answer all my questions though there weren’t too many, and with me already knowing the store I only need info mostly on their wine section. Here are some pictures I was able to take of the wine choices they had, such as their red section that included Merlot, the white section where I found our recent study if Sauvignon Blanc, and of course, box wine.

As I went further into to the store near the back I found a refrigerator that I’m familiar with that holds the wine I see when I walk in. Trueman told me that where they keep most of the wines that don’t see, which is a way for them to move product that hasn’t done well on profit. This actually clarifies why whenever my brothers and I walk in there a note is on the door explaining some type of sale. Which we usually walk past, to be honest.

The wine that is refrigerated and may be resold

The box wine was something I‚Äôve always heard of but, has never actually seen; it was later explained that there’s usually a pouch inside to hold the wine because I couldn‚Äôt figure out how something like that was possible.

Near the front of the store all the way to the left I found where another good part of their wines resides in regions rather than grape variety. From New York to Australia to Syrah there were many wines there waiting for the seals to be broken. By the end of my visit, I felt I had more than enough info and thanked Trueman for his help. Here are the questions I asked along with his answers in quotations.

What are some wines you desire to have in your shop?

“We have a little bit of everything. Wine is very diverse¬†so we try to take it all in”

What are some struggles you have while in this location?

“There isn’t much to complain about. We’re right next to grocery store (ShopRite), so business is good.”

What are your best sellers/where do most of your profit go?

“Most of our wine profit goes to the less expensive names such as¬†Yellow Tail,¬†and¬†Barefoot, which go for $10-$12.”

Do You make your own wine?

“No, I leave that for the pros”

Below I took a picture of some that caught my eye, I should warn you I know very little about wine and mostly just like liquor/alcohol for the pretty bottles.

Country- America Region- California Grape Variety- Cabernet Sauvignon Vintage- 2013 Producer- Down By Law

Country- New Zealand Region- Marlborough Grape Variety- Sauvignon Blanc Vintage- 2015 Producer- Starborough

 

Retail Wine Assignment- Brenda Cordova

When I first encountered this assignment, I didn’t quite know how to approach it because I’m not a big fan of wine and don’t ever really drink it. Although I wasn’t going to be tasting the wine, I wasn’t sure I had the enough information to go in a wine store and question them regarding their store. Luckily we came up with questions in class which gave me a sense of confidence to go.

I visited a close by wine shop by where I work, Warehouse Wine & Spirt located 276 Avenue X Brooklyn, NY 11223.

 

Storefront

Right before I entered¬†I took a breath and opened the door and my eyes quickly noticed how big long the store expanded to and how organized it was. I then was approach by a gentleman name Sam. I informed him that¬†I was doing an assignment for wine class and¬†if he had some time to answer a few questions and take few photos. He answered, “oh sure I have all the time in the world as you can tell” (empty store) As I

My first question which one was which was is the most popular wine during this season?

He said it would have to be the Yellowtail Sauvignon, because it’s an affordable price bottle for a good quantity.

My next question was, How much money does a customer usually spend?

Sam said around $20-$40, as mentioned their price is very economic for their location and also they know who they are targeting so the range is fine for the community.

The following question was Do you get questioned by customers for answers or recommendations on the product they are buying?

He mentioned that not a lot of customers come in looking for questions, they pretty much know what they’re here for, pay and the head out. There has been a few times couple of weeks ago, where someone asked him about the region of the wine or whether it was dry.

Red & White Wines of France

The following question I had was Which category of wine was sold the most Red or White wine?

He said, it’s very hard to say because there is so many varieties of both and they both seem to hit the top.

I then asked if I was able to photograph around and he said sure, I really like how they had mix wines of Red and White in one category according to their country, of course it’s to save storage, but I just liked seeing the¬†different regions,¬†grape variety, producer.

 

Red & White Wines of California

Wines of Italy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also liked how they had sales for their wine, like the one above. An Italian White wine Ruffino- Pinot Grigio it was on sale, 3 for $10.58 Ea. They also had a small section of different regions and producers of Sauvignon Blanc (photo below) There was one from Chile, New Zealand from Marlborough which refreshed my memory from last week wine class.

Different Regions of Producers of Sauvignon Blanc

From never entering a wine store I would recommend this store for a quick stop on your way to friends/family house, or for a special someone. It’s super affordable and have a wide range in varieties of wines to vodka, liquor. It was a nice experience and made me more curious into learning more about wines.

 

Retail Beverage Shop

How many wine stores have you been to? I have been to a few, but never understand how the store display their wine because I never actually walked around a wine store. I been to the wine store when I was little a few time with family, but parents always said to stay by their side which I never got the chance to look around the store. Due to this assignment, I got a chance to look around and ask some questions.

The retail beverage store I choose was Astor Wine and Spirits located at 399 Lafayette Street.

As I was searching for the location, it was not really hard to find. It is a very noticeable big red building. When you walk in, it is quite big and fancy and they have televisions hung up on the walls telling you what promotions and events they have. The employees at the store are very friendly and helpful. In the store their display is nicely organized. They display their wines in different section based on price and taste. The wine is also separated by the type of wine and region with a sign above the wine.

It is interesting having signs of the regions above the wine and provide some information on them about the wine. I had a lot of fun reading the signs because I can learn more things about it. Using the knowledge I earned from class, I practiced reading labels while looking around the store. It was a really fun experience there. Other than the wines displayed on the floor, they also have a cool room for wines that need to be controlled in temperature.

After taking a look round the store, I had some questions for the employee. The employee was really nice and willing to answer all my questions. Their employee answered my questions clearly and phrased it in a way I could understand. They also respond to my questions quite quickly and with a confident, showing me they have the knowledge of knowing their wine and information very well.

First question I asked was, which is the most popular wine and why? The employee said the most popular bestselling wine is their sparkling wine. Sparkling wine is the most popular wine because the price is cheap, under $10 and their store has been promoting the wine for parties, and wine itself is a great value bubble wine. Other popular wines are the ones that are pricing between $10-15.

Seeing the cool room got me wondering about temperature, so next question I asked was, What temperature do you store the wine? The employee respond “it depends on the wine.” For their older wine, they have it in their temperature control room at about 55 degree. On the floor their temperature is around 60 to 65 degrees.

Another question asked was, What is your best value wine? Their best value wines were from France whether they are red or white. The employee did not give me a specific name for the red wine, but as from white wine, Sauvignon Blanc with the price of $9-10.

The last question I asked really curious of what kind of wine it is because I never heard of it before. I asked, Do you see any trends? I got interested when the employee responded “Natural Wine, Organic Wine.” Hearing that really got me interested because I knew there was organic wine.

Not only did organic wine interest me, I also thought it was interesting when I saw display of “Wines that Staff Adore.” I would never expect a retail beverage store to have a section for staff adores. I think this is interesting because if a store has a section of staff adore meaning the company would like to understand and know what the staff likes to drink. It is just like how retail beverage store would always like to know what customers like to drink and buy. Staff are customers too, they like to drink and buy things too. I like the idea of this display because it gives other customers another opinion of which wine to choose.

This trip to the retail beverage store I had¬†fun and learned a lot. I got to see so many different types of wine varieties. As of the store, I think a benefit was their price range which allowed people to purchase some best tasting wine at an affordable price. A drawback about them was that although they had signs with some information about the region, but not information of the wines. And as for the store’s attributes/ weakness, I think they did not show any weakness, but the staff had¬†very nice attitude, friendly and informative. I would recommend others to come and take a look and purchase come wines.

Migthy March – Xiaocui Wang

Retail Beverage Shop Analysis

Xiaocui Wang (Vivian)

“When I first saw this assignment I was very confused , because I did not know anything about wine. Thus, for my retail beverage shop analysis, I decided to go to the retail shop that just one block away from my house called Mighty March. I passed by this store almost every day, but I never had the opportunity to visit. Before I went to the store, I called ahead to make sure that I could speak to the owner or any other store employees that could help me with my questions. ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†¬†

Mighty march is located at 8134 Broadway, Elmhurst, NY 11373. This retail shop opened since 2004. The owner Cici is taken over from a Hong Kong couple since 2014 until now.  When I went to store, i spoke to a nice lady called Shao. I told her the reason why I came visit the store and she was happy to answer all my questions.

As I walked around the store, I found it pretty small as a retail beverage shop. After that I started ask her questions. Shao told me that all of the wines in the shelves were organized by its region and grape variety. Wine suppliers for the shop would recommend them with a list of wine to be purchased, and they chose Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot for red wine. Shao told me that these two types of red wines became the ones with high sale in the shop as expected. For white wines, they chose to sell Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Shao told me that for those who visited the shop for white wine, Sauvignon Blanc is their top one choice. Compare with Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc is fresher and smoother, but chardonnay is too sour.                                                                                                   

Since there are many Asia and Spanish living in this area that make it difficult to sell expensive red wine and white wine. Therefore, the most sold wine are those value from $6-$20.

My last question for Shao was how did she develop her wine knowledge? She told me her knowledge is learned from sales representative. Also, she learned a lot while selling the wines and through communications with customers.

overall, I was happy that I am starting to know wine and I guess after this visits I will continue studying wine.”