Cornell Releases New Wine Research: A Cellar Management Tool

May 21, 2009

Contact:  Glenn Withiam, 607.255.3025,

Cornell Releases New Wine Research: A Cellar Management Tool

Spreadsheet-based Tool Uses Wine Information to Highlight Best Time for Consumption

Ithaca, NY, May 21, 2009 – Deciding when to open that special bottle of wine just became much easier, with a new spreadsheet-based tool available at no charge from Cornell's Center for Hospitality Research at As explained in the report that accompanies the tool, "Managing a Wine Cellar Using a Spreadsheet," by Gary Thompson, the tool allows individuals, restaurants, and bars to keep track of their wines, with the goal of consuming the wine at its peak. A sample spreadsheet that shows examples of typical entries is available for download, in addition to the tool itself and the report explaining the tool's functions.
"To paraphrase an old marketing slogan, we want to drink no wine after its time," said Thompson, author of the wine research-based tool and professor of operations management at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, "It's unfortunately too easy to lose track of a wine. The goal of making sure that the wine is consumed at the right time sounds simple, but there are many moving parts— even with a moderate size wine inventory. With this tool, the only requirement is that the user must be methodical about entering information regarding purchases and withdrawals from inventory."

Although Thompson's Wine Cellar Management Tool is based on a spreadsheet, the user never sees the actual spreadsheet calculations and doesn't need to enter wine information directly in the spreadsheet. All of the data entry and analyses are done via pop-up forms, which are accessible from a "switchboard" within the spreadsheet. Data might include ratings for a particular vintage, prices paid for each bottle, and the number of bottles of a particular variety. Users can obtain estimates of a wine's "drinking window" from professional rating services or they can develop their own estimates. Because the data reside in a spreadsheet on the user's computer, the tool presents no data security issues.
Once the data are entered, the tool provides numerous analyses and wine information relating to the inventory. Thompson points out that most of the analyses are interesting, but the most useful information helps guide the user to make sure the wine is consumed within its "drinking window" which is the period when the wine should be at its best for consumption. In addition to explaining how to use the tool, the report outlines the many analyses that it provides.

Meet and interact with Dr. Thompson, an active member of the executive education faculty at the School of Hotel Administration, when he presents sessions in the Professional Development Program:

Thanks to the support of the Center for Hospitality Research partners listed below, all publications posted on the center's website are available free of charge, at

About The Center for Hospitality Research
A unit of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) sponsors research designed to improve practices in the hospitality industry. Under the lead of the center's 77 corporate affiliates, experienced scholars work closely with business executives to discover new insights into strategic, managerial and operating practices. The center also publishes the award-winning hospitality journal, the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly. To learn more about the center and its projects, visit

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