Narrowing down wine selections that complement a menu can be difficult, but the way these wines are organized and presented to a member is critical.
There is no correct way to arrange a wine list and each different way has its own pros and cons. But most important is that a wine list is understandable to everyone. If members feel confused or intimidated by the list, it could push them to order a different beverage.
There is a lot of information that can be included when listing wines, but a list should be formatted in a way that is easy to read and navigate. The name of the producer, the name of the wine, the region in which it was produced, the vintage, and the price should always be included. Brief descriptors can also be included as well as suggested food pairings.
In the past, there were only a handful of great wine-producing nations, making it simpler to have a wine list organized by place of origin. However, there are incredible wines from all over the world now which makes this classic layout more challenging. Organizing by country and region is still acceptable, but there are other layouts that are rising in popularity.
A second way of organizing a wine list is to focus on varietal and grape type. When organizing this way try to leave out a couple popular varietals, doing so will encourage members to try something new that they never would have considered. A more modern way of listing wines is by style or theme. When listing by style such as “fruity and bold” or “fresh and crisp” it can help members discover new wines they might enjoy based on others they have enjoyed in the past.
Even though there should be a variety of price points, a wine list should never be arranged by price. The price should also not include the dollar sign. Adding this symbol increases a member’s attention that they are spending money. Keep the design simple and only include the number directly after the wine.
No matter which approach works best for a club, it is always important for a wine list to be clean and graphically appealing so that members can quickly identify important information and easily navigate through the list to their bottle of choice.