Independent retailers are finding new ways to engage shoppers and showcase their gourmet offerings.
Foodland Pasadena in Adelaide recently announced in-store guided gourmet food tours.
Further south, Tasmanian gourmet grocery group Hill Street Grocer has its own Wine & Cheese Club.
Hill Street Grocer Group Manager Marketing and Communications Emma Munnings says the club was established as a means of offering added value to customers.
“Members pay a one-off membership fee of $49.95 and then receive a 15 per cent discount on our gourmet cheeses and a 10 per cent discount on wine,” she says.
“We also host events exclusively for members, although Covid restricted our ability to do that. As well as regular cheese tastings, some of the events that we’ve hosted are a ‘Master Class with [international cheese specialist] Will Studd’, a ‘Spice Appreciation Class with Ian ‘Herbie’ Hemphill’, ‘The Omens and Portents Gin Launch Party’, and ‘A Celebration of Tasmanian Wine and Cheese’.”
Ms Munnings says demand for gourmet products in Tasmania is good, particularly for those locally grown and produced.
“Our customers are also very interested in sustainability, and support products that are sustainably produced,” she says.
Home cooking continues to be a strong trend in the state, with Hill Street Grocer citing a high level of interest in the recipes and recipe videos it produces and highlights in its stores, catalogues, EDMs, social media and Christmas magazine.
“While Tasmanians are enjoying experiencing our fabulous dining scene again, the growth in home cooking that occurred during the pandemic shows no signs of slowing,” Ms Munnings says.
“With busy lifestyles, many home cooks are looking for simple but delicious recipes that can be prepared quickly. The 30-minute mid-week dinner recipe category is very popular. Gourmet ingredients are important as they can elevate a simple meal into something special – think about the difference between scrambled eggs and scrambled eggs with truffle.”
Read more about gourmet and fine food in the latest issue of Retail World.