Building restaurant wine lists: a study in conflict
Faculty of Business and Law
School of Marketing, Tourism and Leisure
While the situation in which a consumer makes a wine consumption choice has previously been examined the influence of those providing the range of choice at a restaurant has not been fully explored as part of the context of consumption. This qualitative study, based on interviews with restaurant wine list managers, investigates wine list creators’ perceptions of customer interaction with the wine list. The findings show that how restaurateurs perceive their customers’ desires will influence their wine list offering. However the findings from this study uncover a struggle that the restaurateurs face in creating a wine list, reflecting business and emotional needs, in the face of their perception of a customer’s desire for safe but varied experiences. This study has implications for, and informs the understanding of, those who market wine for sale through the restaurants. It furthers understanding of how those who are gate keepers of wine lists take perceived customer expectations as a guide to create a wine list which contributes to a unique customer experience. A greater understanding of the motivation of the restaurateurs, as they seek to meet customer needs, allows wine marketers to engage in targeted marketing decisions for specific wine types and brands.