As you probably know, Village Cellars developed its own polypro pylene glass rack "Glazmataz" and has been selling Plumm crystal glasses in Glazmataz since 2018. We also started the Plumm Glass Rental Service which uses Glazmataz to facilitate its convenient service, which has received very positive feedback from customers. We’d like to introduce feedback from Chef/Sommelier Tatsuya Asakura of Maison de Taka Ashiya. Beyond Covid: The changing restaurant business The pandemic has finally slowed down, and more and more restaurants are reopening. However, even those starting new restaurants are on a small scale to hedge their risks. In fact, the new restaurants close to us that opened recently only have counter seats with the chef or a single server also doing the serving. In a country with as many restaurants as there are stars in the sky, it is essential to distinguish yourself from other restaurants to survive. One distinctive differentiator ‒ wine pairings ‒ is being offered by an increasing number of restaurants. Even sushi, kaiseki, and Chinese restaurants are hiring their own sommeliers, or the head chef themselves achieve sommelier certification. I even see non-alcoholic pairings. There are many benefits to introducing pairings; the diner’s pleasure of enjoying a drink more closely matched to each dish, improved staff skills as they need to be more familiar with each dish, and increased opportunities to communicate with guests. On the other hand, the restaurants staff needs to have a certain level of knowledge and skills, and the recipes require time to develop and perfect. However, the bigger challenge may be to procure and manage the manpower and glassware necessary to provide the service. One of the most effective options to solve this issue is the "Plumm Glass Rental Service". Satisfied customers and reduced manual labour In the restaurant where I am chef-sommelier we have hosted more than 20 winemaker's dinners in the past 10 years. While these dinner s with famous producers, whose names are familiar to wine lovers, are very popular, organizing the glassware has always been a challenge. In a restaurant with a capacity for about 30 people, more than 200 glasses are needed, and the shape and quality of the glasses has to be considered according to the type of wine. This is when I came across the Plumm Glass Rental Service. What surprised me was the wide variety of glasses they offer. Not only Champagne glasses, but also both Bordeaux and Burgundy red wine glasses, handmade glasses for Grand Vin, casual machine-made glasses, stemless glasses for Japanese cuisine, and decanters. This variety was very appealing to me, as conventional glass rentals at best were limited to champagne, red, white, and tasting glasses. But what is more attractive, is that the glasses do not need to be washed nor polished after use. They can be returned as they are. The larger the event, the more glasses used, and the more washing and polishing afterwards ‒ or not, when using the Plumm Glass Rental Service. In addition, the pre-use polishing is not required either, so the glasses can be set up immediately after unpacking. Conventional rentals are often found to be damaged or dirty when inspected upon arrival. However, thanks to their strict quality control, the Plumm Glass Rental Service is almost spotlessly clean, and we’ve seen no more than one broken glass in several hundred supplied at a time. And in those occasions, the replacement response has been incredibly quick. Since my restaurant started using the Plumm Glass Rental Service, guest satisfaction at large parties and winemaker dinners has increased significantly, and we are seeing more repeat customers at large wine parties. This high-quality service is made possible by "Glazmataz" wine racks that the glasses are delivered in. The specially made Glazmataz glass racks dramatically reduce the breakage rate of glasses during loading and unloading, and can be used directly in the dishwasher. They can also be reconfigured to some extent depending on the space available, allowing for effective use of space. Smaller restaurants can rent glasses only when they need to use a large number of glasses, eliminating the need to carry inventory and have storage space in-house. It is an effective option considering the long-term costs, even if you need to arrange the rental each time. Conclusion The Corona disaster is slowly coming to an end, and customers' expectations for the restaurant industry are likely to grow. In these circumstances, you can enhance customer satisfaction by introducing services that are different from other restaurants to give you an advantage. In my opinion, there is no need for individual business to handle all the work in the future. I think it is a good idea for small restaurants to outsource their operations as needed to make them more efficient and effective. The time is precious, so you might as well get the job done more efficiently and quickly. I think the Plumm Glass Rental Service is a big help with this. In any case, I would like more restaurants to know about this innovative service, and I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to everyone who has worked so hard to develop such a wonderful service. Tatsuya Asakura A.S.I. Certified Sommelier Diploma / J.S.A. Certified Sommelier ExcellenceChef/Sommelier at Maison de Taka Ashiya since 2013. Previously, he was Chef/Sommelier at Le Pont de Ciel (Osaka), and has worked at leading restaurants including George Blanc (Macon) and Guy Lassausaie (Chasselay). He participated in the 9th All Japan Best Sommelier Competition. 《From Village Cellars》In 2015 Village Cellars became the exclusive importer and distributor of Plumm crystal glasses, the first Australian glass ware brand designed for specific wine styles and produced in Slovakia. To compete with other premier glasses available in Japan, we created the Plumm Glass Rental service. The service, which allows customers to rent glasses to fit various wine styles, both machine made and handmade, is unparalleled. What makes this service possible is the Glazmataz glass racks, our invention which prevents glass breakage in transportation and washing. As of 2021, it has been patented in Japan, China, and the U.S., and the patent is pending in the EU.Plumm Glass Rental ServicePlumm Glass Rental Service are delivered and collected at the time you reserved by our own delivery truck (within the Tokyo 23 wards and suburbs) or courier service.