The Middle East wine market is difficult to control, admitted Marco Baldini, business manager of Enomatic – the Italian company that manufactures wine refrigeration and dispensing machines.
“We opened our Dubai office about one year ago as we needed to have someone out there,” he said. “But for us, the nature of our business makes it difficult.
“Sometimes there is huge investment from hotels, but then the restaurants are not busy, and that’s not good for the machines. They need to be used regularly, or they can get stuck.”
Baldini, who cites around 3% of the company's net profilts coming from the Middle East, with the biggest market being the US, followed by China and then the UK, believes that the Enomatic is an essential tool for the wine business.
“It allows you to have a tiny taste of Chateaux Margaux for 50 euros,” he said. “Not everyone can afford a full glass, or bottle.”
Oryx Rotana, Qatar and The Gulf Hotel Bahrain already use the machines, which open bottles then force in nitrogen, increasing the wine’s shelf life for up to 21 days.