I recently came across a really nice idea in the expanded wine section of a refurbished Edeka (German supermarket) store. Next to some of the more expensive wines there was a huge red button for calling a customer service representative. It was too tempting, so I gave it a try. Within a minute someone arrived and asked how he could help. Excellent. I asked for some advice on what wine he though might be best with the (meaty, slightly spicy) meal I was having tonight, preferably a German wine as I wanted to try something local. He said unfortunately he couldn't help me as he didn't know much about wines... The wine expert wasn't in today. Did he know when he might be available? Sorry, no. Hum.
Nice idea, shame about the execution. I wonder how that customer service assistant felt about admitting he couldn't help me. Probably too busy running back and forth from his regular duties to really care. However, I wonder how he might have felt if he had been given at least some basic training, not necessarily to expert level, but just enough helpful tips to please someone who knew absolutely nothing about German wine. Pretty chuffed I'd imagine. (Don't worry about me, I went for my regular high tannin/high alcohol inky Languedoc red and was happy enough. I'd even go back to that store just for the fun of pressing the big red HELP button.)