Tips to Upsell Wine

Blog, Wines 16 July 2019 Published by Tegan Philp

Selling wines in restaurants amongst other establishments can be quite difficult at times and upselling to customers is even harder! However, upselling is a valuable sales technique and when executed correctly, it can be a highly effective way to increase your wine sales.

Upselling definition

It isn’t about just increasing your serve size ‘Is that a large glass?’, ‘Two glasses?, Why not buy the bottle?’. It also doesn’t have to mean selling at a higher price. Futhermore, upselling or trading up for wine doesn’tnecessarily suggest just increasing the profitability, it can simply be defined as selling a higher quality wine and exposing the customer to other options that were perhaps not considered, this can then lead to improving the customer’s experience.

This is where knowledgeable bar and waiting staff come in. People love discovering something new and being wowed. By having friendly yet informative wine servers, there can be benefits to both you as a business and your customers.

The overall customer experience will improve, resulting in:

A happy guest that will potentially spend more money

Repeat customers

Recommendations to other people to visit ‘spreading the word’ (which carries more weight than any social media post)

Consequently this has a positive effect on your staff as well, as they will be empowered, motivated, a team player and will feel more satisfied in the job overall.

Here are some suggested product upsell techniques for your establishment:


Thanks to the Prosecco boom, bubbles are seen as a common offering on the bar and not something that’s only brought out on an occasion. An easy upsell from Prosecco is to English Sparkling Wine. Locals and visitors alike are now more open to trying regionally produced wines and with wines available from eight wineries in the South West, there are plenty to choose from including:

Lyme Bay Brut Reserve from Devon – Fruit driven sparkler with refreshing lemon and green apple notes with a vibrant, creamy mousse finish.

Knightor Brut from Cornwall – Well-balanced, deep fruit flavour and subtle complexity from lees ageing in bottle.


Whilst simple Pinot Grigio is undeniably easy to drink, there are many other white wines from Italy worth discovering. There are lots of good food partners as well as refreshing lighter style wines for drinking with friends. Grillo, Verdicchio, Pinot Bianco and Gavi are other varieties available, each with their own characteristics and appeal, below are a few examples:

Villa Dante Verdicchio from Le Marche – Hints of freshly ripened apricot and a deep, lasting taste. Aftertaste reminiscent of bitter almonds.

Ca’ Bolani Pinot Bianco from Friuli Aquileia – Hawthorn, acacia, white peach and tropical fruit flavours and an elegant finish that reflects the varietal notes.

Cossetti Gavi di Gavi from Gavi – Persistent bouquet with floral and fresh fruit notes. The Taste is pleasantly dry, pleasantly fresh and harmonious.

Knightor Brut, Lyme Bay Brut Reserve, Villa Dante Verdicchio, Ca' Bolani Pinot Bianco, Cossetti Gavi di Gavi, Point West Touriga Nacional and Vega Red are all available to purchase. Please contact Sales on 0345 241 1122 to place an order for your business.


There are thousands of different grape varieties out there but you know what you’re getting with a Chilean Merlot. It’s worth showing your customers some similarly priced wines from Portugal that might have an unfamiliar grape variety such as Touriga, Tinta Roriz or Jaen, but really over-deliver for taste and ability to partner with food.

Point West Touriga Nacional from Lisboa – Intense colour, forest fruit flavours and subtle oak-spice notes. A deliciously smooth style with real concentration of flavour.

Vega Red from Douro – Rich and full-bodied but very smooth. Delicious intense fruit and a complex, elegant finish.

For more ideas or to request a wine training focused on the art of upselling your wine, then contact your Wine Development Manager. Or get in touch with us on Facebook /StAustellWines, by tweeting us @StAustellWines or Instagram @StAustellWines

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