Restaurants Look for Ways to Spike Bar Sales

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, “as the ongoing economic slump threatens future alcohol beverage sales, restaurateurs are working to give guests a reason to toast with wines, beers and spirits.”

“According to Technomic Inc., total industry alcohol sales are projected to fall 2.5 percent in 2010, with fine dining taking the hardest hit as sales in the segment tumble 10.4 percent. In response, restaurant operators have started to offer higher-end beers and expanded wine lists to draw guests to bar items even while they are on a budget. Technomic research shows that only bars and nightclubs are expected to enjoy a slight uptick in 2010 — 0.6 percent — in terms of nominal dollars, according to David Henkes, vice president of the Chicago-based foodservice consulting firm.”

“Henkes noted that most foodservice operations in the bars and nightclubs category are sports bars and neighborhood taverns — places with regular loyal clienteles that offer a value proposition. He noted, however, that since the projections are in nominal dollar terms, real sales for the category still are likely to dip. Technomic predicts that wine will experience the biggest drop in sales, falling 6.7 percent in 2010. Sales of spirits are expected to fall 2.1 percent and beer will suffer the least, with sales dropping 1.8 percent,” the story said.