The Wonderful World of Wine Walls

Michael Faith

Wine Not?

Fine Wine Consistently Sells for Over its Value

No doubt you’ve seen wine walls at fundraising events. These classic revenue streams are very popular because they’re a simple yet fun way to boost revenue, particularly in a crowd full of wine lovers! There are several different ways to set them up, depending on how involved your guests want to be. Regardless of the method you use, start by consulting your state and local laws regarding the sale of wine and proceed accordingly. After that, begin your wine wall with somewhere between 40-100 bottles and be sure to have adequate signage detailing the rules. Let’s take a look at some of the methods we’ve seen used successfully.

Classic Wine Wall

Set bottles up on a table and wrap them attractively in bags or colored paper. Set a standard price somewhere between $15-$25, depending on the average value of the bottles you’ve procured. Guests pay a set price for a “mystery” bottle – make sure the set price is at least as valuable as the lowest-priced bottle on the wall. That way guests know they’re at the very least getting their money’s worth, and perhaps even getting an incredible deal! It’s a great way to engage donors who may not have the means to participate in your live auction or special appeal.

Spin the Bottle

It’s a different take on the classic wine wall – there’s more guest involvement and consequently more fun! Here’s how it works – arrange beautifully wrapped bottles of varying values in a circle on a solid table (no wobbles, please!). Again, guests pay around $15-$25 for a “spin” – the neck of the spinner bottle points to the bottle the guest takes home. This is a great method for crowds who prefer a more active game and for those who enjoy the element of chance and the possibility of taking home an extremely valuable bottle!

Cork Pull

Again, the element of chance makes this method extra fun! Display several unwrapped, numbered bottles of wine, both expensive and moderately-priced. Place corresponding numbered corks in a big glass container. Guests pay $15-$25 for an opportunity to pull a cork and they take home the bottle with the matching number. No losers in this game!

Premium Pull

The rules are essentially the same as the classic wine wall, but you throw in 4 or more PREMIUM bottles ($100 or more). Guest pay $25 for a chance to win a much more valuable bottle, but again, no one loses, as everyone takes home a bottle worth at least $25.

Wine Toss

Ring around the bottle! Set up rows of wine bottles with several inches in between. Strategically place expensive bottles among more moderately-priced ones. Guests pay $15-$25 for a chance to toss a ring – if it lands around the neck of a bottle, they take that one home.  

Wine Grab Bags

It’s a little more expensive to buy into this game – guests pay $50 for a wine grab bag. Each bag is guaranteed to have a bottle of wine and some gift cards. Some bags have more than $50 worth of gift cards – some have a premium bottle of wine. Get your guests fired up about the possibilities by using signs indicating what’s inside some of the more valuable grab bags. No matter what, guests leave with something special!

Will Your Wine Wall Win the Day?

For more ideas on revenue enhancers for your next event, reach out. We’d love to help you brainstorm, identify and adapt the right wine activities for you!

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