A Basic Guide To Wine Etiquette…

I sure do love a glass of wine – but doesn’t everyone? In fact, of all the drinking options that are out there, it is wine that is generally deemed the most acceptable…

This is perhaps because there is an association with sophistication that comes with serving and drinking wine – although, I am a little unsure why. Ask for a glass of wine and people think you are a lady, ask for two shots of vodka and a Smirnoff Ice you get ‘side eye’…go figure.

That said, sophistication can go flying out the window if you don’t observe what is generally seen as the proper rules of etiquette that come with wine consumption. While they sound pretty stuffy to me, these rules are in place so that wine drinkers can get the very best out of the wine that they have been served. 

Let’s take a look at a few of the basics so that you can pretend to be posh when you host your next party…

Robust Wine

The first thing that you need to be aware of is the temperature at which wine should be served. Your wine should ideally be stored in an area where it can be kept at an ideal temperature, but you may need to chill certain types of wine before you serve them to your guests. When you know which temperature a specific wine should be served at, you are essentially then on the clock to make sure that it gets to the perfect temperature at just the right time. The general rule of thumb here is that wine will experience a temperature drop of 4F (2C) for every 10 minutes in the fridge. If you are trying to increase the temperature of a wine that has been chilled, those same time and temperature numbers will increase at the same rate, when placing the wine at room temperature.  Got it?

When you are serving the wine, always pour directly into the center of the glass, as this allows the flavour and aroma to essentially bloom inside the glass. It is always best that the glass be no more than half full, as this not only makes the wine easier to drink, but also means that the drinker can get their nose in there and take in the aroma of the wine. Those who love and appreciate wine do not just do so for the flavour sensation, but also the aromas that each individual wine delivers. Part of the fun of wine drinking is weighing in on the elements that went into putting it together. Do not take that part of the process away by filling the glass to the brim.

A big part of getting the serving correct is making sure that you always use the correct glass. The exact same glass should not be used for white wine as is used for red. White wines are generally served in taller, slimmer glasses, while red wines benefit from a larger bowl. The choice of glass is crucial if you want to deliver the full taste and aroma of the wine, whilst also making it easier for your guests to appraise the wine that you are serving.

The etiquette tips are basically just scratching the surface of what is expected, but by following these you will be well on your way to looking like a wine connoisseur!

What do you think? Will you bother with wine etiquette?

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  1. Josh Robbins

    Wow, I have to admit that the only point made in this article that I knew about was to only fill the glass half way. Great info. I am now ready to impress my buddies. I mean, I know how long to cool or warm a wine and will give them a hassle if they start to serve their red wine in a glass that is most suitable for white. Really, I think this was a very helpful article. Now someone write about what to look for (or sniff for) in a wine. That would also be helpful to people like me. Thanks for the story.

  2. Britanica

    I’m going to be honest, I am not much of a drinker. I haven’t had a drop since I was 22! While I do enjoy the taste of a sip of wine with the right meal I would not know the difference between etiquette and basically drinking the wine at a low end pub! I actually did enjoy this read. I mean I learned some things and I will certainly share this with my mother to prove her wrong. She thinks she is all class with her wine… No way! haha

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