Ordering wine in a restaurant can seem to be a daunting experience but it need not be . All you have to remember is that you will be asked to perform a few rituals that are required to order wine and the rest is up to you.
Of course a lot of the time now you will not have to go through most of this but all depending on what kind of restaurant you are in will depend on the service that you will receive. So to keep things simple we shall follow the steps one by one .
Fist when to order the wine . Now you should not order wine till everyone has ordered some food. Once you know what everyone is going to have then you should order the wine.
Second it is the host who should order the wine. This used to mean the man who was the head of the party . Now in this day and age it probably means who has booked the table and going to pay the bill. Whoever that person is should be presented with the wine list. Now if that person then delegates the job to someone else that person should either accept or refuse if they do not feel up to the job.
The problem with taking on the roll of the person who orders the wine is that you should always take care to not get it badly wrong. Consult with the host to see if they are alright with the decision that you are going to making. Also give them the option of more than just one bottle . Then the host can decide what price they want to spend and not you.
Also find out what everyone likes to drink and preferences then you can make sure that everyone will get some wine that everyone will like.
Wine list are very good now days and in general have a clear and concise description to help you. If you want any more help then ask for a member of staff to help you.
Third is the serving of the wine. Now all depending on the style of the restaurant the wine could just be left on the table as you arrive for you to help yourself . But for our purposes let’s go through the proper service of the wine.
First as you arrive at the table you should be seated and then the wine should arrive unopened and presented with the label facing the host. The bottle should be held in one hand with finger underneath the bottle and the arm supporting the bottle. The second hand holding the neck of the bottle with the first and middle finger. This is so that the host can read the label and see whether that is the wine that they have ordered. If the host has delegated someone else to order the wine then the bottle could be presented to them.
Then the wine should be opened. Now assuming that the wine does not need time to breath then it can be served. The first person who should taste the wine should be the host. Evan if you are the person who has ordered the wine and knows if it is right or wrong the host should taste. Unless the host declines and the person who ordered the wine then can taste the wine.
Now in tasting the wine a small amount will be pored into a glass. And the person who is going to taste the wine should just sip it to see if the wine is alright to drink. To taste the wine is not to act like a person in a wine tasting sniffing the bouquet swilling it round the mouth to aerate the wine to get all the flavours and examine the colour in a light. It is just to see if the wine is palatable and not gone off.
After the tasting of the wine then it should be served . Pouring the wine in to the appropriate glass on the right-hand side of each person . Going round the table anticlockwise, serving all the ladies first and then all the men.
Now as to what is the right glass for the right wine all depends once more on the style of restaurant. Normally the white wine glass is smaller then the red wine glass. But you can have set glass types for certain wines but that is a whole different set of rules.
And that is about it . All you ever need to know about how wine should be served in a restaurant or formal situation.