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Marina Elettra Snow
July 29, 2020 | Marina Elettra Snow

Wine Etiquette Tips.

Let's talk about one of my favorite subjects, which is wine etiquette!

There are a few things that you might want to remember in specific situations. Some people have asked me what's the right way to hold your glass and other questions like that, so I thought I'd give you some useful etiquette tips when drinking wine with a company or in a restaurant.


1- Opening the wine.

Let's start by opening a bottle of wine.  The first thing that you want to keep in mind when you open a bottle of wine,  is that you don't want to make any noise. You want to be stealth about it, ninja-like, and open it very quietly. So, no popping the bottle!


2- Should we smell the cork?

In a restaurant,  the sommelier would leave the cork on the table for the guest. Ideally, the sommelier would smell the cork for you to make sure that the wine is not corked. So it's not very polite to pick it up and smell it yourself. You can have a look at it and make sure that the logo on the cork is the one you were expecting. You can also feel it with your hands to make sure that it's a little bit moist on the side that was inside the bottle because a dry cork could be an indicator of a problem. 


3- Pouring the wine.

Always start pouring the wines for your guests first. There are other two things it's important for you to remember when pouring the wine: hold the bottle by the bottom and don't pour too much. It should be a short pour that leaves plenty of room for the wine to breathe, and it also looks more elegant in the glass. 


4-Evaluating the wine.

So once you poured the wine you can swirl it a little bit, smell it and think about it. When you are trying to evaluate a wine, the first thing you are looking for is a defect. You can also ponder it and see if you come up with any nice qualities in the bouquet but don't act like you know everything, because you don't!  The bouquet is very subjective. Our olfactory mechanisms are based on memory so if you are picking up blackcurrant, for instance, somebody who never smelled blackcurrant may not pick that up. They might pick up cherry or something else that they are familiar with. 


5-Holding the glass.

Hold the glass by the stem because if you hold it by the bowl you will warm the wine and that has an impact on it. 


6- Sipping the wine.

Always sip the wine from the same spot on the glass.  A very useful tip is when you set the glass down try to keep that spot facing you, especially if you have a lipstick on, it looks really ugly to have lipstick marks all across the glass. 


7- Cheers! or Cin Cin!

Another good one is that when you are saying "Cheers" or "Cin Cin" you want to look at your partner directly in the eye as you clink your glasses.


8- Small taste when ordering a bottle at the restaurant.

I might get a little bit of flack for this but I'm going to say it anyway..

When you order a bottle of wine in a restaurant and the sommelier or the general manager, or whoever is pouring it for you, offers you a taste, they are offering you an opportunity to detect a defect. So for example, is it corked? is it cooked? has it gone into some sort of fermentation? Is there something wrong with it? Is it oxidized? And It is NOT to find out whether not you like it!

So be careful when you're ordering wine, especially an important or expensive one because the goal of the small taste that you might be offered is only to establish whether or not it's defective. If it's not defective try to enjoy it because you really shouldn't send it back. 

Hope this post can help you with some basic wine etiquette. 

See you soon! Ciao for now!



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