Do You Know How To Order Wine Like A PRO?
How do you order your wine when you don’t know much about wines? Did it ever happen to you to simply order the cheapest one? Or maybe the coolest one just because you are cool after all? Or was it the one that has an easy name to pronounce? Or maybe you order the one that has a nice bottle? Or red because you never liked white wine anyways?
So here you are trying to figure it out like it’s a school application and your partner is waiting, the waiter is waiting, the people staring, the time is short, now you found one and have no idea how to pronounce it and so on. Ha! It seems like they’re all professionals and you, ONLY you, have a problem … Oh well…Unlucky you! Ha! Just kidding…Just so you know, all of us have dealt with the struggle of ordering wine. I personally always feel a bit anxious when I have to order while looking on the wine list, because…I needed to learn these things and it took time. I also realized that I am not the only one struggling so, here is a list of six steps on how to order your wine with confidence at your next outing:
Step 1 – What do you like the most in wines? Is it that heavy and dirty red taste of Pinot Noir or are you a fan of white wine with some fruity flavor like a light oaken Chardonnay? The most important step, know what you like in a wine before ordering it. Try a few bottles at home for a few weekends and in the end you will have a favorite and also a plan B, just in case.
Step 2 – Always start with light wines and work up to heavier wines when you plan to pair with food. I’ve heard it so many times from the waiter, that the win I just picked will not pair well with the food I ordered. Matching and pairing is a big step to overcome, but with some suggestions from a sommelier or even an experienced waiter, and some well done research at home, you will do just great.
Step 3 – If you want to go for a specific region, go for the best known selection(if in difficulty google it or ask a friend- me!) and if available, ask the sommelier or waiter for suggestions. The last option is always the easy way out, even if your waiter is not a sommelier, he will have the work experience from other clients and the recommendation will come handy.
Step 4 – Don’t forget: if you pick your wines based on the price, you will usually get what you paid for. Nevertheless, the most expensive option is not necessarily always to be known as the best…Nor does it taste like the best should. I’d advise you to choose the middle prices, don’t go for the cheapest or the most expensive. Keep some money for the next outing!
Step 5 – If you are planning to order a bottle and there is an option for the glass as well, better order first the glass to be sure the taste will pair well with the food choice of the outing. You need to be happy with your choice before committing to a full bottle of wine.
Step 6 – Don’t forget about ageing, as not all varieties age well. In general Riesling and Chardonnay are the best age options for whites and Cabernet Sauvignon for red.
What do you usually look when choosing your wine in restaurants? Share in the comments below your thoughts. I still have a lot to learn and I am opened for suggestions.