"A" for effort - Printable Version

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- Catch 22 - 07-27-2001 12:34 PM

Within the last few months a new liquor store (in CT, an all-inclusive liquor store is the only place you can buy wine other than at the winery) opened up relatively close to my house. They have a decent wine selection, so I have ventured forth on several occasions to make some wine puchases there.
Last week I was searching for both Schmitt-Sohne Riesling and Bonny Doon Pacific Rim Riesling. This store carried neither, but when I asked for them, the owner immediately said he was looking to stock more wines and would order both right away and have them in a few days. By chance (or not), I was back there a few days later, and he had the Schmitt-Sohne, which I picked up. He recognized me and said he could not get the other wine I had asked for. I think he had a problem with the Bonny Doon name, because I was able to help him find it in his wholesale book, and he has since ordered it.
While I would prefer someone with extensive knowledge who can help me with selection at times, I will certainly buy in the future from someone who is actually willing to provide the best service that he is capable of, especially since he has one of the larger selections in town, and reasonable pricing to go with it.

- RAD - 07-27-2001 01:04 PM

Not to apotheosize myself, but I've said it before--"the customer is a god," as the saying goes in Japan.


- winoweenie - 07-27-2001 06:10 PM

Been my motto for ebber-so-long. WW

- Thomas - 07-29-2001 12:25 PM

...and we is god-fearing...

- barnesy - 07-31-2001 09:27 PM

Thats why I switched wine shops recently. I am a young guy and when I go into the shops on my day off, I am usually in shorts, a t-shirt and sandals. Not exactly something that screams "i need service in the wine section." Thus, I was pretty much ignored at the first shop I went to. The one I go to currently always greets me politely and quickly. They spend time talking to me. I once asked them a question about sparkling shiraz (purely out of curiosity) and they said they had tried it, decided not to order it for their shop but then offered to get a bottle for me if I wanted one. I'll pay an extra buck or 50 cents for the service any day. Plus, they have a great selection of Italians, which I have been drifting towards now that I have explored France on the basic level. Treat me well, and I will be loyal and keep coming back.


- Innkeeper - 08-01-2001 06:18 AM

This time of year I always shop in shorts, tee shirt, and sandals. Always get great service. Having grey hair helps.

- winoweenie - 08-01-2001 08:53 AM

ALL I shop in is shorts, a Minc " Wine-Stained " T-shirt and tennies. Come to think of it, when I get dressed up it's clean shorts, clean shirt , and my new pair of tennies. If I called on one of my clients in long pants they wouldn't recognize the weenier. WW

- Thomas - 08-01-2001 04:57 PM

Shorts! The image of all you guys running around in your underwear makes me want to drink beer.

IK, RAD, tell 'em the kind of personal service we give at is-wine: espresso, comfortable chairs and great conversation.

- hotwine - 08-01-2001 07:51 PM

You guys should try my shopping attire: bib overalls, shitty old boots and a baseball cap, often as not chewin' on a cigar. They've learned: the dude still buys generally by the case.

- wondersofwine - 08-02-2001 08:43 AM

At the wine shop I usually visit in Raleigh, they have a cooled, temperature controlled warehouse and loan you labcoats to put over your apparel while browsing. They also have shopping carts to collect your purchases. Another feature I like is that they will store your wines for you for up to six months if you are short of storage space or don't have ideal temperature control at home.

- mrdutton - 08-02-2001 07:19 PM

Hotwine, you can cure the problem with the boots by cleaning up the yard in your bare feet....... either that or just hose them suckers off before you leave the barnyard. (The boots, that is!!)

What store manager in his (or her) right mind would allow you to enter their domain with them boots? Unless of course you are going to a French wine shop where the smell of earth and barnyard are expected!!

- Botafogo - 08-02-2001 09:19 PM

We hear constantly about one of our friendly competitors where "no one even says hello to you" while people say our place is like a sushi bar because the entire staff yells out a big howdy (and usually by name) when you walk in the door.....


- hotwine - 08-03-2001 05:27 AM

You don't understand, Mike. In Cow Country, the smell of manure is the smell of money. Most retailers who aren't fresh off the bus realize that, and bankers are schooled in it.

- mrdutton - 08-03-2001 07:48 AM

Two experiences recently with different stores.........

All this centers around a recent family reunion in Northern Delaware:

In preparation for the reunion (my tasking being to provide the wine) I visited the local Total Wines and More store. This was on a Monday morning right after they'd opened. I spoke directly with the manager. I told him I wanted one case of Ca Del Solo Big House Red, one case of K-J Collage (Zin/Syrah) and one case of Cler Blanc (a crisp, dry, oak-free white from Sauvion et Fils). He check stock levels, said all were in stock. I told him I couldn't buy it this day, since I would be driving around all day long before I got home and I did not want to have the wine cooking in the trunk of my car. The manager said he would have the wine pulled off the shelf and set aside for me. I was pleased at this and said I'd be back on Thursday early evening to get the three cases.

Come early evening on Thursday and I get back to the store. The manager is not there, but that should not be a problem. I go in, tell the clerk who I am and that I've come for my wine. All I get is a blank stare. So I explain about the three cases of wine. So the clerk comes back to me and says that he's not holding anything for anyone, but he'll be glad to sell me the wine off the shelf. So up he comes with one case of the white, one case of the Kendall-Jackson and only eight bottles of the Bonny Doon. I said I wanted a case, he says he has no more in the store. I say then let me get something else to round out the case that costs about the same. He says sure, but he can't discount the other four bottles, not store policy. I became quite livid. Told him there are always exceptions for good customers. He said he would not discount the four filler bottles (Rosemount Diamond Label Shiraz). I raised my voice in protest, told him he was going to end up one customer short and a few other things. I think I embarressed him. Because he then offered to give me coupon discounts for the four bottles.

I left with three cases of wine, but I was still upset over the way I'd been treated especially since I'd been promised that the wine would be pulled from the shelves and held for me. I may not ever go back there.

Next experience..........

Up in Delaware, I find out that I forgot my waiter's friend - my Pulltap corkscrew. So I go to the local wine shop right across the state line into Maryland. This place has been here for years. I shop there just about everytime I visit my parents in Delaware. But they don't know me from Jack. I may be a regular customer there, but am so infrequent that I would never expect them to know me. I can't find any decent corkscrews, all they have are the cheap chrome jobs. So I ask if they might have anything better squirrelled away. The lady I spoke with asked me to wait and minute and she'd check. While waiting I wandered back to their tasting room and low and behold, laying on the bar is the exact thing I am looking for - a decent corksrew with a nicely serrated blade built right. When she comes back out to tell me they don't have any in the store, I picked the one up off the bar, showed it to her, and told her I'd buy this one from them if they were willing. She went back to ask the manager and then came out to tell me I could have it, no charge.

Now which store do you think I am going to be sending a thank-you note along with a new Pulltap (as soon as I get it).

- chittychattykathy - 08-04-2001 07:09 PM

Your all welcome to visit us, we make no judgments period, let alone any based attire or age. (+ I can tell you I am both a "pleasure" to see and to do business with! heh heh, [img][/img])
Speaking of visiting, Boto, I will be in San Fran at the end of this month and I want to drop in on you, what days are you in?

- Botafogo - 08-04-2001 09:32 PM

Kathy, we are in Santa MONICA, not San FRANCISCO..... but if you do make it down here, I am in Tuesday through Saturday (10-7 weekdays, 12-9 Saturdays).


- winoweenie - 08-05-2001 08:59 AM

Hi Boto, I'll be going thru on the way to Napa next Friday. I'll call you from San Diego on Wed and if time constraints don't pop up I'll give you the pleasure of buying the Wieneer lunch hehe WW

- mrdutton - 08-05-2001 08:42 PM

My diatribe goes by with no notice? I am amazed!!

- Innkeeper - 08-06-2001 04:15 AM

How come you didn't name names? Hopefully the bad guys weren't Atlantic Wines & Liquors. Love that place.

[This message has been edited by Innkeeper (edited 08-06-2001).]

- cpurvis - 08-06-2001 11:28 AM

mrd, no response to your "diatribe" prob'ly means a unanimous affirmation. IMO, nothin' to disagree w/ in your post. cp