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P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc. Message Board

  • bearofbleecker bearofbleecker Oct 27, 2005 1:11 PM Flag

    Longbreadandwine:

    I will trust you on the Bennett Hall Maximus and try a bottle. I agree that PFCB's wines are overpriced. A couple of rounds of indifferent plonk and you and a companion are soon looking at an $90 check. However, I think that the big problem with PFCB is one of their own creation: Pei Wei's. I think they actually saw the problem with PFCB's: Limited expensive locations, which means you can't have too many restaurants in a market, which precludes mass marketing. So they created a simpler, smaller, concept geared to lower priced locations and takeout. Trumped their own hand. I also think it's evident that all of the higher-priced casual dining chains are hurting as the consumer tightens his/her belt. In my opinion, this will worsen as the ability of homeowners to rollover their credit card debt into home refi's disappears.
    For from indulging in financial shenanigans, I think PFCB is unusually transparent, publishing detailed sales figures well ahead of the earnings announcement. (Looking at the most recent set, you did not need to be a brainiac to see that this was not going to be a stellar quarter.) I also think they are excellent restaurant operators... even if their wine list is overpriced and undervetted. Incidentally, most of the better Chinese restaurants around here offer about a dozen decent bottles of plonk priced from $22 up to a max of about $35. I think a middling bottle of white wine is about right with Chinese food. In exchange for the Bennett Lane tip, I will offer a suggestion that you sell this position while it's being propped up at 44. Should go lower soon, I think.