Wine Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts

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The enjoyment of the experience of wine tasting is significantly increased by adhering to the proper etiquette. As is the case with the majority of hobbies, there is a standard procedure that the vast majority of wine aficionados follow. There are particular etiquette standards that must be adhered to while tasting wine at a vineyard, ordering wine at a restaurant, or organizing a dinner party. These standards are in place to make the experience more enjoyable.

Tasting Room Etiquette

In the tasting room of a vineyard, white wines are often sampled first, then red wines, and finally dessert wines are sampled and analyzed. Within each of these categories, wines with a lighter body come before those with a larger body. It is customary to provide water and crackers in between pours of wine to help clear the palette. The proper manner of drinking wine does not need you to consume every drop in every glass. In order to properly dispose of any leftover wine, tasting facilities at wineries often supply jars. Don’t feel like you have to try every single wine they have to offer; just taste the ones that seem good to you.

If you ask for a second taste of a specific wine, it is considered appropriate to purchase a bottle of it for your own use. There are a lot of wineries that charge tasting fees, and those costs are often added on to any purchase. You are not required to purchase wine; rather, you should just get what you want to drink. Having said that, it is considered polite and appropriate to make a purchase at a small vineyard if you have scheduled a tour or appointment there. It is considered poor form to bring children into a winery’s tasting room, since this violates wine etiquette.

General Restaurant Wine Etiquette

The serving of wine at a fine restaurant may be an agony that is made more difficult than it has to be. The following advice will make it easier and more comfortable for you to adhere to the traditions that are associated with wine serving.

The major objective you should have in mind when selecting wines from the wine list of a restaurant is to choose ones that match well with the entrées that you will be ordering. Consider buying halves of the wine or ordering it by the glass if the variety of the meal orders makes it impossible to choose a single wine that will go well with everything. Your queries may be answered by the wait staff and sommeliers, but it will be to your advantage to take use of their services and advise if your inquiries are pretty precise.

For instance, you shouldn’t inquire with the sommelier, “What wine pairs nicely with a rack of lamb?” Instead, try asking, “To complement the spice of the lamb, I’d like to serve a full-bodied Rhone wine that is based on Syrah. Have you have any particular favorites?” Your efforts will be appreciated, and both the service and the interaction will go more smoothly as a result. You are going to have a better experience overall, I can assure you of that.

After your order has been placed, the waiter or sommelier will fetch your pick and then hand it over to the host of the party with the label facing front. This is only to make sure that you have the right bottle of wine. After removing the cork, it is then put on the table. Do not touch or smell it since none of those actions has any significance unless it is obviously contaminated, and the waiter or sommelier should be able to tell if it is.

After that, a trace quantity will be put out for the host to enjoy. First, smell the wine as you are swirling it in the glass, and then taste it. This is to ensure that the wine has not gone bad, and it is not a chance for you to return a wine that is in good condition but that you do not really like. After the decision has been made, the wine will be served counterclockwise from the left to the right, beginning with the women. The glass of the host will be filled up very last.

Corkage Etiquette

It is a more common practice in a number of regions of the country for restaurants to waive the corkage fee for customers who bring their own wine to the establishment. On the other hand, this is not always the case (particularly on the East Coast), and in order to maintain appropriate wine etiquette, there are a few things that should be kept in mind at all times.
Always give the restaurant a call ahead of time to double check that they would accept corkage fees. Also, make sure you inquire about the cost to prevent any unpleasant surprises. From my own experience, I’ve found that very few restaurants have a corkage cost that is more than $20. Do not make the assumption that this is always the case since there are certain restaurants that will exclude you from paying this cost if you buy an extra bottle of wine from their list.

Wine that is delivered to a restaurant should not be available on the restaurant’s wine list at any price and should be of a level of rarity that is somewhat uncommon. After the waiter or sommelier has opened the bottle and poured the contents, it is customary to give them a sample of the wine as a sign of good manners. If you follow these recommendations, you will make sure that the personnel at the restaurant is satisfied as well as yourself.

The Duty of the Host at A Dinner Party

One of the most time-honored and widely practiced kinds of etiquette in the history of human civilisation is the obligation of the host toward his or her guests. When it comes to pouring wine, you should place the utmost importance on ensuring that your visitors are relaxed and at ease with the procedure.

Always be sure to give the wine some time to breathe at room temperature before serving it. Never, ever serve visitors wine that has just been opened right away. It is the duty of the host to make sure that the wine is in good condition and has not gone bad in a stealthy manner. This need to be carried out in private, and a representative sample ought to be tried out.

Always use sparkling clean glasses when serving wine to visitors at your home. Although it would seem to be common sense, this is really a fairly common oversight. In addition, if more than one kind of wine is being offered, the pouring of each bottle should follow a sequence that makes sense.

Be aware, particularly when dealing with older wines, that there is a possibility that there may be a significant quantity of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. When selecting how much food should be served to each of your guests, keep this in mind. Avoid the awkward situation in which the last person to get a glass will have an unreasonable number of sediments in it. If you are concerned about this happening with a certain bottle, do not pour the remaining half glass of wine.

It may be required or desirable to decant a wine in order to either remove sediment from it or expose it to air. Both of these things may be accomplished by using a wine decanter. When engaging in this method, use caution since older wines have a greater tendency to swiftly lose their flavor when placed in a decanter for an extended period of time.

The act of drinking wine ought to be one that is both pleasurable and unintimidating. If you keep these suggestions in mind, you should be ready to handle the vast majority of social settings that include wine.

Jan Helge

Jan Helge is a renowned wine connoisseur and aficionado with a passion for sharing his knowledge and expertise. He has dedicated his life to the study and appreciation of fine wines, honing his skills through years of study and practical experience at various wineries. Jan is the founder of WineCellarSecrets, a blog that provides a wealth of information on all things wine-related. Whether you are a seasoned wine lover or just starting to explore the world of wine, Jan Helge's WineCellarSecrets is the perfect source of inspiration and education.

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