Saturday, September 18, 2010

Why do people buy wine in restaurants?

Like over-priced popcorn at the movies, over-priced alcohol at restaurants is a way of price discriminating--charging higher prices to high value consumers who identify themselves by their desire to consume alcohol at restaurants.  Here is colleague Mike Shor's survey of wine prices in Nashville:

Nashville Restaurant Wine Prices
Notes, link to wine list
(by the
is better)
Café Margot116 (16)186
Great bargains throughout the list, but the best are in the higher-end reds, which rival retail prices. [list (pdf) found here  $28-$135]
J. Alexander's78 (27)193
Cheapest Conundrum of any list at $40. Lowest-priced wines have high markups, but the $40+ range is great. [list (pdf) found here  $26-$65]
Tin Angel78 (27)204
Large variance, with some great bargains mixed in with less favorable markups.[list (pdf) found here  $26-$75]
Flyte103 (90)209
Fairly consistent pricing. The $50-$60 range has the lowest markups. Upper-end sparklers have the highest. [list  $24-$110]
Valentino's145 (15)216
Very large variance in markups, ranging from about 20% to nearly 300%.[list (pdf) found here  $27-$230]
P.M.22 (12)220
Best Veuve Clicquot price at $80. Very reasonable given that lower-priced wines are usually the most marked up. [list  $27-$30]
Mirror23 (17)222
Small, unpretentious list with reasonable prices on lower-priced wines.[list  $25-$42]
Old Hickory Steakhouse (Opryland)160 (20)225
Highly variable pricing, ranging from 50% over retail to well over 300%.[list (pdf) found here  $34-$200]
Old Hickory Steakhouse (Gaylord Orlando)114 (25)228
NOT IN NASHVILLE [list (pdf) found here  $47-$490]
Ombi45 (24)228
Strangely, the better deals are on several under-$40 wines. [list  $32-$80]
Watermark380 (33)232
Some of the lowest Nashville prices on several $30-$60 wine-list staples.[list (pdf) found here  $32-$300]
Tayst78 (24)237
Fairly consistent markups across the list, and lowest prices on several champagnes. [list  $32-$135]
Bound'ry222 (44)239
Eclectic pricing with some of the best deals alongside some of the worst markups in Nashville. A few very good bargains at the high end. [list  $26-$250]
Carraba's (Nashville & Cool Springs)37 (30)241
Highly variable markups. [list (pdf) found here  $20-$42]
Yellow Porch54 (36)243
Fairly consistent pricing. Mostly common wines, all priced in the middle of Nashville range. [list  $26-$64]
Rumours75 (74)247
A couple of bargains in the $60 range offset some 200% markups n the under-$40 range. [list (pdf) found here  $26-$60]
Amerigo53 (29)247
No real bargains under $80, but a couple of high-end wines rival retail prices.[list  $26-$65]
New Orleans Manor37 (21)250
Damning a nation with faint praise, the list featuress Blue Nun as "Germany's most famous wine, Soft and mellow with a natural sweetness." [list  $22-$49]
F. Scott's270 (40)251
Very deep list, but what it has in common with other Nashville restaurants is usually priced higher than the competition. [list  $30-$475]
Mafiaoza's129 (62)251
Reasonable prices. No real bargains, but nothing outrageaous, either.[list  $22-$135]
Caffe Nonna34 (23)251
Top half of the list is pretty reasonable, while on the bottom half of the price range, 200% markups are the norm. [list  $29-$57]
Sunset Sam's (Gaylord Orlando)42 (29)254
NOT IN NASHVILLE [list (pdf) found here  $31-$52]
Saffire101 (16)254
750 ml of Conundrum will run $72, worse than any other restaurant. Several other wines also have highest prices in Nashville. [list  $28-$100]
Cabana75 (35)255
[list  $20-$42]
Buca di Beppo46 (24)256
[list  $24-$39]
Sperry's Belle Meade144 (32)258
Highest prices on Opus One, Roederer Brut, Moet White Star, etc.[list (pdf) found here  $24-$280]
Sperry's Cool Springs250 (54)258
The same Nashville-leading markups as its sister location, though with a few extra markups. Cavit Pinot Grigio is $30, highest in Nashville. Strangely, the other Sperry's location has it at $22. [list (pdf) found here  $32-$310]
Zola108 (32)260
No bargains to be found. [list  $24-$120]
Park Café62 (24)260
Veuve Clicquot Posardin NV for $140? That's more than a case of Brut Rose (which is a better wine). [list  $31-$115]
Midtown Café130 (50)261
Very consistent (high) markups, top to bottom. [list (pdf) found here  $26-$199]
Eastland50 (23)264
[list  $29-$90]
Radius1067 (25)273
Cheapest bubbly, an $8-$9 Barefoot for $38??? [list (pdf) found here  $35-$130]
Anatolia16 (16)278
Low-price wine lists have a disadvantage since the markups are usually higher, but Yellow Tail for $25? [list (pdf) found here  $23-$37]
Sunset Grill241 (68)279
Seasonal 50% off wine sales suggest regular prices are not too great. Several wines over four times retail. [list (pdf) found here  $25-$400]
Merchants133 (48)279
[list  $25-$215]
Sambucca95 (23)283
Come on! You can't offer a bottle of Lafite Rothschild ($400) without listing a vintage! [list (pdf) found here  $28-$150]
Jimmy Kelly's61 (25)291
Several wines have highest prices in Nashville. [list]
Acorn69 (46)316
If you search long enough, you may find a wine price that is merely insulting. $70+ reds have some of the highest markups on the menu. [list  $26-$120]

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