Joe Campanale of Fausto in Brooklyn, NY on Ramping Back Up and Imported Water - Wine & Spirits Magazine

Joe Campanale of Fausto in Brooklyn, NY on Ramping Back Up and Imported Water

Photo by Michael Harlan Turkell

How are you and your staff doing compared to last year at this time? Are you operating at full capacity?

We’re operating on full capacity, but due to staffing shortages, for a limited number of days. Prior to the pandemic we were open 7 days for dinner plus brunch on the weekends. Now we’re just open for dinner 5 days a week. That said we’re planning on increasing services and being back to pre-pandemic services by Mother’s Day.

Has the composition of your wine team changed since last year?

No, it has remained the same. However, when we open for additional services, we will be hiring a sommelier, which we didn’t have prior to the pandemic.

Has anything changed about the wines you’re buying, or the wines your customers are looking for? (this could include price ranges, wine styles, regions, etc.)

We’ve noticed that the very highest-end of wines haven’t been moving as well. People are drinking as much as before but not at the super-high end. That said, we’ve been increasing the average bottle price in the middle range, $80-120 lately.

Have you run into any shortages or supply-chain issues with regard to wines, food, other beverages, glassware or other equipment?

Just our water imported from Italy, but it’s back!

Any changes in your cocktail program? Are you seeing more demand for cocktails? Have they assumed a higher percentage of your alcohol sales?

No changes here.

is the Italian wine editor at Wine & Spirits magazine.

This is a W&S web exclusive. Get access to all of our feature stories by signing up today.