The boozy client lunch is now a part of history. At the turn of the millennium every bank had its’ Sir Lunchalot’s when lunching was a KPI and going back to the office afterwards was culturally frowned upon. Business types were skulling copious amounts of South Australian Shiraz and Cabernet and feasting on the new food sensation Japanese Wagyu Beef. Oh how we laughed at Wagyu’s Mozart and massage loving ways! Today’s recruiters feel they were born in the wrong era when they hear those stories of the good old/bad old days. The GFC (Global Financial Crisis if we must give the beast its full name) killed the long lunch. There is a feeling that the GFC was not caused by excessive leverage, structured products or greedy bankers. It happened because everyone was concerned about their next lunch rather than doing their jobs properly. Now we live in a world where ideas like Productivity, Lean and Agile have replaced Béarnaise sauce and Barossa blockbusters as preoccupations.
Arise the half bottle your time has come! Top sommelier, Michael Shipley, was telling me about this trend at the Tuesday Wine Tasting he hosts at Mordeo Restaurant in the Deutsche Bank Building. Michael stocks 15 half bottles as clients increasingly want to moderate consumption at lunch time. The half bottle also allows people to taste a couple of different wines more easily. He introduced me to the rather magnificent Hospitalet de Gazin 2007 from Pomerol, Bordeaux available in half bottle size. This shows just what Bordeaux can do even in small measures. A good half bottle of Bordeaux is also a lot more palatable to the accounts department!