Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

depanneur wine


Recommended Posts

Great post carswell, as usual, lots of food for thought.

I think the wine writers really should be taken to task about conflict of interest issues. They are wined and dined (and yes taken around the world by agents not the SAQ) and their alliances are starting to show.

Much to discuss here.

David, did your letter ever make it to the paper?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To me the most outrageous SAQ policy is their lack of attention to local producers. 4 years ago when I started coming into Montreal regularly, there were NO QC wines in any SAQ that I found. (Except perhas some "gift package" fortified fruit wine.) Not to speak of the plethora of drinkable wines coming out of Ontario and BC. Here we have a goverment (owned or apointed?) monopoly and they can't even support their own (taxpaying) producers!!??

I never forget when I first walked into a SAQ and asked where the Canadian wines were and they guy looked positively bewildered. I finally found maybe two or three ON and BC wines. Well hidden.

Granted - most QC wines are (were) not much to write home about but that is besides the point especially if you consider SAQ is not above delivering DEP plonk. And the local QC producers quality is RAPIDLY improving - It SHOULD be SAQ's monopoly DUTY to represent their own taxpayers. And educate their customers to small local products that should be the pride and joy of every Quebecker. Even at a loss!! Or get out of the way and let a local merchant sell a case or two of the regional product.

Lately I've seen some movement towards some representation of QC, ON and BC wines but it is still way (WAY) under where it ought to be. And I think they still throw up barriers to local producers in terms of rigemarole and volume requirements.

I had an interesting conversation at L'Orpailleur last summer. They claimed they rather liked the SAQ price structure because it allowed them to sell their wines to restaurants at SAQ prices. Which sounds pretty shortsighted and to me and could have a lot to do with the under reprepresentaion of QC wines in Montreal restaurants. Who knows. The SAQ hydra controls it - dark forces at work - bats are flying, basically.

BUT (to balance) there is Marche De Saveurs at Jean Talon for local wines. And the selection of wines at a SAQ beats most US wines stores - certainly for for French wines - but it comes at a STEEP price, and I am not talking about the sticker on the bottle.

/gth

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ABG, the only problem about the SAQ running a business with customer in mind is that it is not really a business, not one that needs to be competitive anyways. That is the problem with the SAQ, you could run it blindfolded and it would still operate with massive profit.

Okay, so like most companies, the guys at the top are on the take. I'll grant you that because you seem to have done a lot of research. But, honestly, the SAQ isn't what it was in the 80's and I don't believe they are running around blindfolded. Revenues are way up and our thirst for quality products and new products grows. Where was Porto in Quebec 10 years ago? Now that SAQ at my country home has 2 walls devoted to different Ports. Look at SAQ branches like the one at Rockland shopping center. It is almost fun just to walk around the store.

Sure, they set the rules, but they have raised the bar too.

Edited by ABG (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My wife and I lived in Montreal over 20 years ago and still remember with fondness our local depanneur and convenient plonk. We could leave our appartment, go down to the lobby, turn left, then left again and walk into our own depanneur.

Grab a pack of spaghetti and ajar of sauce, a generic red wine. Instant party without leaving the building.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

to abg ,the saq is just following suit to north american trends ,the wine and spirits buisness has evolved since the 80 s all over the world ,spend a half hour on the saq website then half an hour on the lcbo site,its shocking.....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quoted from the New MTL Resto Thread - Identifier

I do however understand where you are coming from, most SAQ CEO's have had a good handle on marketing (if you like the smart approach of doing money hungry moves like dep wines for no real long term vision), yet a very poor one on management. You do have a point on the overall face lift of the last ten years, anything under that type of achievement would have been criminal in my books.

That's the original point. The SAQ is much more customer friendly: later hours, telephone support, knowledgable staff, stores like the one in Rockland and hence, who really has to settle for dep wine anyways? If you want quality product, it is available. Is that marketing or management? Its a mix of both I guess.

Yes, Dave, I like the LCBO too. So many new world wines we don't have here. I still think the SAQ has fostered to a degree the changing paletes of Quebecers. Port, for example, is much more popular here than the rest of Canada. Lots of people read those little flyers that the SAQ puts out monthly with the Gazette and use them as a guidebook for what to try and sample and explore. At least I do.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

sorry about that:

And by the way, the web site Dave talks about has been designed in house and compared to a white elephant when put side by side with other shopping site.

This is similar to Loto Quebec dropping a cool 100 million over three years to CGI for something that will never exist... the fact is most public entities would have lynched a CEO on daily SAQ decisions.

I do however understand where you are coming from, most SAQ CEO's have had a good handle on marketing (if you like the smart approach of doing money hungry moves like dep wines for no real long term vision), yet a very poor one on management. You do have a point on the overall face lift of the last ten years, anything under that type of achievement would have been criminal in my books.

Anybody wants to discuss biker's fondness for the SAQ's elite offers ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...