THE BEVERAGE NETWORK:
is a current favorite pairing from your
menu and list?
Any of our new Euro-
pean whites with all the great fresh sea-
food we get, they all work great.
What kind of special promotions
do you do?
Malbec and Meatballs on Monday.
Tacos on Tuesday, half off all Spanish
wines. Wine’d Down Wednesday; all wine
are half-price by the glass (this gives us a
chance to clear some dead soldiers be-
fore reprint). Pizza and Pinots on Thurs-
day (includes Pinot Noir, Gris, Blanc and
and Grigio). Fish Camp Friday; all sea-
food tapas only $5 and all beer half-price.
What are some wines that have
done especially well by the glass?
All the Robert Foley wines are popu-
lar—The Griffin red blend, Kelly’s Cuvée
Syrah, Semillon. We own the sparkling
BTG selection in town, currently serving
11 from $7 [Simonnet-Febvre Rosé] to
$20 [Veuve Clicquot].
What software do you use?
Positec POS and good old Excel
How many distributors do you
I try to buy at least something from all
20+, but mostly from five to seven. I like
when they bring winemakers by to see
our system. We place orders each Mon-
day and Thursday; reps stop by to pick-up
their orders for next day delivery.
What are some recent trends
you’ve seen in Charlotte?
Consumers are loosening up a bit,
$12-$15 for wine by the glass is not so
bad anymore. Big bottle sales are up as
well for groups of six or more. Around
Charlotte, a lot of restaurants are start-
ing to offer more wines by the glass.
New systems, dispensers, etc.—all
very expensive and impressive. We’ve
had 200 wines by the glass for 14 years.
How does your service approach
change with so many wines by the glass?
We continue to aim for a table of
four, for example, to order a different
glass of wine for each of their courses.
Two or three glasses per person for a
What other wine programs do
I admire anyone experimenting with
keg wine. I think it’s revolutionary and
could be the way of the future. Cuts
down on bottle cost, cardboard, ship-
ping expense—and they last longer
than an open bottle. I’m waiting on
someone to build a bigger wall of wine
than ours with taps on the wall.
John Duncan, Bonterra, Charlotte, NC
BY W. R. TISH
hurch wine was never like this. Wine lovers at Bonterra—housed
in a spacious, smartly renovated 110-year-old church in Charlotte,
North Carolina’s historic Southend District—have 200 choices of
wine by the glass. All of the glass pours are available by the bottle as
well (displayed on a veritable wall of wine), and 150 bottles beyond those
populate a Cellar List. We caught up with owner and wine director John
Duncan for insight regarding how he manages the dynamic program.
Selections on wine list:
Bottles in inventory:
Price range of list:
$28 to $80; $75-
$1,800 on Cellar List (CL)
Average bottle price:
$60; $125 CL
Sweet spot on list:
$50; $150-$175 CL
Wine list strengths:
program of 200 wines from a variety of
regions and grapes
Wines by the glass:
80 whites (42°F), 80
reds (62°F), plus Ports, dessert wines and
bubblies; about 10-12 entries turn over
every two weeks
Price range by the glass:
No particular brand; 16 oz.
white, 19.5 oz. red; specialty glasses for
gas; bottles are tested for freshness and
thrown out if necessary (total waste is less
than $150 cost per week)
BONTERRA – BONTERRADINING.COM