Drinking Port Wine in restaurants; margins too high?

Port Wine bottles in Vinologia, PortoWhile I was researching for consumer trends on the Port Wine industry, I found an interesting article on Restaurant Wine. The text is from 2005 and shows satisfying conclusions about Port Wine consumption, defending that Premium Tawny Ports were increasingly popular in the US restaurants. I wonder if this trend has changed in the last few years. I guess many of you that live in the US, and have been attentive to the market during the last years can help me answer that. If you live anywhere else, do you see any change in terms of Port Wine offering in restaurants?

In the center and north of Europe and US, regions that represent over 90% of Port Wine consumption, it is pretty common to find in restaurants, at least, one or two references of Port Wine. Actually, I dare to say that in Holland, Belgium, UK and maybe even Denmark, good restaurants have a broader offer of Port Wine than Portuguese restaurants do (for a Portuguese native it’s not hard to find an explanation for this, as we love to consume everything that is not national; whisky rocks in Portugal).

However, in the same article, you could read “Premium Tawnies should be priced like other wines, not spirits! Ridiculous markups (more than 4 times costs) are the surest means of killing sales.” This is probably right, even though I am not the best person to talk about it, as a producer I want my wine to be available at the lowest price. Is there anyone to defend restaurants?!?

Share you drinking habits, do you use to drink Port in restaurants? And are you reducing or increasing your overall consumption of Port Wine? IVDP‘s figures show year-to-date sales of Port Wine growing over 10%. Not bad!


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