Submitted By Simon Hardy Butler, May 18, 2017

When I see that a $100 bottle on a restaurant’s wine list is among the lower-priced options, I want to cry.

Wine is a big way to earn money at eateries. There’s nothing wrong with putting a markup on a vintage sold at one’s establishment.

There is something wrong, however, with featuring a wine list where most items are unaffordable.

Come on—what happened to the $30 bottle? Hm? I realize many of the higher-end spots need to procure the best for their customers, but let’s get real. A more modestly marked vino would be a boon anywhere and would let diners know the restaurants care about their patrons’ pocketbooks as much as they give a darn about their gustatory experiences.

And wouldn’t that be a lovely thing?

Yes, elegant culinary temples need to keep up appearances. Yes, folks like to splurge now and then. Still, a dauntingly priced vin list is not always fun to look at … especially for those who are newbies to the grape. Folks can learn a lot better (and more quickly) about what’s good and what’s not by taking minute steps to the top. The Petrus can wait.


I’m not saying that eateries should stop serving fancy wines. On the contrary. Those are staples and should be retained. Instead, I’m suggesting the addition of more modest bottles so as to round the lists out. Make them accessible. You know what that does, right?

It makes people want to come back. Because they say: “Hey, that great restaurant had some great deals on wine. Let’s go there again!”

You see what I’m trying to say? It’s a win-win situation.

Anyway, maybe this plea will reach some restaurateurs. Or maybe it won’t. Regardless, I’m happy I voiced the opinion. If you stay quiet, you won’t get heard.

I’ll raise a glass to that … especially if it’s cheap.

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