WINE with John Rozentals Mount Langi Ghiran’s Hollows Vineyard … protected from western Victoria’s cold south-westerlies. A SCRUMMY NEW RED Trevor Mast, who died aged just 63 in March 2012, developed vineyards at several sites in the foothills of his beloved Mount Langi Ghiran, in western Victoria. Among them was the Hollows vineyard, established in 1996 on a site protected from the cold south-westerlies and with a variety of aspects and soil types suited to producing a range of the wine styles that Mast was seeking. The name is derived from both the surname of the property’s previous owner and the undulating nature of the landscape of the little valley that this vineyard occupies at the northern end of Mount Langi Ghiran. The first shiraz under the Mount Langi Ghiran Hollows Vineyard label was produced from the 2010 vintage and received immediate acclaim for its soft and approachable, yet quite richly flavoured cool-climate style. During the 2015 vintage, a block of the Italian red variety sangiovese from the Hollows vineyard caught the eye — and obviously the palate — of the Mount Langi Ghiran winemaking team, who found it individual enough and delicious enough to commit to the production of a new wine under the Mount Langi Ghiran Hollows Vineyard label. I certainly found it delicious enough to include as one of my wines of the month. Visit www.langi.com.au. TOP SHELF with John Rozentals MOUNT LANGI GHIRAN 2015 Shiraz ISOBEL ESTATE 2016 Chardonnay MOUNT LANGI GHIRAN 2015 Sangiovese QHA REVIEW | 48 Softness and approachability seem to be consistent keys to the structure of Langi shiraz and they certainly shine here. Look for richly layered flavours of dark berryfruits intertwined with the lifted scents of spices. Match with some really top steak, straight off the char grill. For most of the winedrinking world, New Zealand’s Marlborough region is synonymous with sauvignon blanc. This wine is proof that other grape varieties also do well there. It was recently crowned Champion Wine of Show at the Air New Zealand Wine Awards, the first time in 25 years that a Marlborough chardonnay had won that trophy. The flavours of red cherries, with distinct herbal notes, are the keys to this lovely mediumbodied red. Don’t expect incredibly dense, deep colour. Sangiovese just isn’t like that. Instead you get a glass of joyful, fruit-driven, food-friendly red that would go a treat in your local bistro with a bowl of red-sauced pasta.
Paul St John-Wood PUBTALK THE IMPORTANCE OF A STRATEGIC PLAN By now all the holiday festivities have concluded and you are back to business as normal. From all reports, most pubs have enjoyed a positive January to kick off the year which has been very pleasing to hear. I have assisted a number of hoteliers with formatting strategic plans for the year ahead – the below information was provided to hoteliers last year and again it may prove timely to ask yourselves these questions to ensure you are focused for the challenges which may lay ahead; Developing a strategic plan - nine questions publicans should never stop asking themselves Your strategic plan should at least prepare you for, if not predict this evolution based on responses to the following simple questions. Your responses may change as rapidly as year to year so it is important to frequently revisit this strategic process and adapt where necessary. 1. What business are you in? What business are you really in? A typical publican will answer this question by explaining their alcohol product range or list the counter meals that they sell. But this is not the business that you are in. The business that you are in is customer satisfaction. As a hotelier, you must always define your business in terms of what your products and services do to improve the life of your patrons through their experience and interaction at your hotel. 2. What business will you be in the future, based on current trends? In business, the trends are everything. Which way is the market going for you today, and what changes do you need to make in your strategic direction to continue to exceed the expectations of your target market tomorrow? 3. Who are your patrons? Your ideal patrons? Your perfect patrons for what you sell? You can’t hit a target that you can’t see! As society and culture changes, your ideal customer profile changes as well. 4. What does your patron consider as value? What do your patrons want to enjoy or receive from your products and services more than anything else? What must your customer be convinced of in order to frequent your hotel rather than that of someone else? 5. What do you do especially well? In what areas do you excel? What is your competitive advantage? What makes your products and services superior to that of any other offered by the competitors in your region? 6. What are your goals? You know the importance of detailed, business development planning 12, 18 or 24 months ahead. Before you create a strategic plan of action, you must know the answers to the following questions: What are your sales goals for the next year, broken down by month, or even week and day? What are your goals for profitability? Most of all, does everyone in your hotel who is responsible for achieving those goals know exactly what those goals are? 7. What are the constraints on your business today? What is holding you back from achieving your goals of sales, cash flow, and profitability? Of all the factors that are holding you back from achieving successful business development, what is the biggest single factor, and what could you do to alleviate this constraint? 8. What are the 20% of your activities that can account for 80% of your results? What are the 20% of your products or services that can account for 80% of your sales? What are the 20% of your patrons that account for 80% of your business? What are the 20% of things that you can do personally that can account for 80% of your results? 9. Based on your answers to the above questions, what strategic plan of action should you take immediately? What should you do now? What should you stop doing? What products or services should you discontinue altogether so that you have more time to work on those few things, that 20%, that can make an enormous difference in your business? QHA REVIEW | 49