Bad wine pricing with a suspicious restaurant name
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Anyone who really knows me, also knows that I am particular about where I spend my money because not only am I looking for a good wine selection, but I am also looking for less than gouging prices that you’ll normally find in places that are literally charging you for the ambiance (Four Seasons comes to mind).
Most restaurants usually set the price of a glass of wine almost equal to, equal to, or even a little more than the cost of the whole bottle of wine. In the case of a bottle of wine, they normally set it to be anywhere from 150% to 300% the cost of the bottle, but I have easily seen it being five times the cost of the bottle. Don’t flinch too bad, because when you realize the profit on a bottle of liquor, especially something like Johnnie Walker Blue Label, it will make you cringe.
I know what wines to avoid, as well as what places to avoid just for these practices but in having a drink before the end of the year with a friend, I choose the lesser of two evils that she suggested, which was a place called The Wine Thief which is located on Germantown Avenue in the Mount Airy section of Philadelphia. I have probably been here twice before; once with my goomba Chef Al and once before with my friend the Reverend Doctor Wil. Wil is not only a professor of theology at the local seminary located close to there, but also an expert in the Old Testament. She is one of my go to people when I have a question in regards to Christianity, the Bible, Judaica or even Islam for the matter.
Anyway, as I waited for her to arrive, I pulled up a chair at the bar and surveyed the wine list. It took me about ten minutes to go through the whole thing, though it was only one page. What stood out to me was the fact that the pricing seemed a little odd and it made me use the old bean to compute the savings that were supposed to happen when ordering larger quantities. You see, a standard pour is five ounces of wine, which is just a little under one fifth of a bottle of wine. If a bottle of wine is 750 milliliters (ml), then a glass is approximately 150 ml. Now, their pricing was at one glass, 500ml and the bottle. Now, I will say that some restaurants offer a serving of either eight or nine ounces of wine as well as the standard five.
As I looked at the differences in the pricing, I realized that there was no advantage in ordering a larger size as there was no savings. Now, I have seen this before in my favorite wine spot when it comes to certain bottles, but I know that in those cases that one glass is not equal to the price of the bottle itself, and I am expecting a certain markup. As I looked at all of the prices for all of the wines at all of the serving sizes, I didn’t see one saving at all! I mean, out of some twenty plus wines, there was not one discount.
Their only saving grace was that they had a good Zinfandel and that the Prosecco wasn’t bad.
No need for any big conclusion. Look carefully, read carefully, do the math and then realize if you want to patronize a place again.
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