People mainly ask us about wine, but every few days we get questions that are straight out of Monty Python.
We think it comes from our friendly faces and customer banter, but sometimes these non wine questions just come out of the blue. We are open 7 days a week so sometimes it’s the simple fact that our doors are open for business more than other shops.
We run a little list at certain times of the year to see which member of staff can boast the most left of field conversation. Everybody loves as Top 5…
Top 5 to date in reverse order:
5: “we’ve come from Australia, do you sell the wine we buy down the road?”
4: “we’ve come from California, do you sell the wine we buy down the road?”
3: “ oh I thought you had a restaurant here?!”
1: “do you sell malted milk biscuits?”
But most of the questions are wine related. We spend a vast part of our time talking to customers, explaining wine flavours, styles, wine making techniques ( but keep it lite!) and what wine will be most suitable for you. This is a massively rewarding and enjoyable thing to do, as you must remember that our product is one you want to buy. Not a run of the mill daily life item, but something alive with individuality that you can connect with like nothing else.
Of course some of the classics never go away, and are part and parcel of the life of an independent wine merchant. Do these sound familiar?
Top 5 reverse order:
5: “ I can’t drink French wine it gives me a headache” ( Impressive to have tasted them all )
4: “ do you sell English Champagne?” ( nobody does!)
3: “ They keep all the best stuff for themselves don’t they?” ( that old chestnut )
2: “ I don’t like Chardonnay, but I love Chablis” ( easy does it )
1: “ I had a wine the other day with no sulphites in, do you have any?” ( here we go again…)
The rich tapestry and sometimes downright bonkers questions mean that this job is varied and fun, and there tends to be quite a lot of laughter in our lives.
Pushing people’s taste buds into the unknown has been part of our job from day one, and we’ve found that immensely satisfying. Introducing people to grapes like Picpoul, Cortese, Albarino, Tannat, and Gruner Veltliner, plus being at the forefront of local wine production and it’s promotion has carved out our niche.
Don’t just take it from me, just ask our customers.