75CL, evolving image of wine merchant

If cars are available for test drive, and ice cream for sampling, then why should wines be any different? That is a question Cedric Mui, manager of 75CL, has answer for. Yes, you can do just that. With 56 wines including Bordeaux, New Zealand Pinot, and Italian Aglianico, 75CL wants to serve anyone who needs wine.

At first, 75CL looks like another new player in Singapore wine market fronted with young millennial faces dabbling in a traditional industry. In reality, this establishment receives support from experienced veterans in its parent company, Magnum Spirits and Wine. 75CL started online business in 2015 and constantly strives to meet customers’ expectation in every aspect of wine shopping, including a same day delivery. I looked through and found over 650 wines, which mostly are below $100.

While most businesses are going from physical to digital, the company converted part of its warehouse office into tasting lab. Seven wine-dispensers installed on both levels of the office dispense 40ml tasting portions at around $3 each. But do not be mistaken that only cheap wines are available from the dispensers. As I write, it is likely a machine is dispensing 2012 Barolo into someone’s glass. Furthermore, the U-shaped center table caters for wine workshops and sit about twenty persons. The sink, which resembles a dentist basin, is a much-needed feature that keeps disgustingly stained spittoons out of sight.

In a nutshell, 75CL targets mass market consumers who need help with wines and had traditionally rely on word of mouth. Although one can argue that the use of wine dispensers is not a novelty, it remains a useful first hand experience for connecting with end consumers. Receiving instant feedback will also allow the business to respond with agility to market needs. The clever use of existing floorspace near Jalan Bukit Merah is an advantage to promote customer engagement without being too far out in an industrial park.

75CL is a result from good thinking and learning useful methods from other merchants. A first step in the company’s evolution, which I expect more as its followers become increasingly sophisticated.

Now, we wait for the next move.

the author

One fine day, Wai Xin woke up and decided to throw Java coding out of window in exchange for a career in wine. Believing strongly that wine is for enjoyment and not a trading commodity, he encourages sensible, affordable drinking and the exploration of individual preferences.