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Tips & Tricks

The Essential List of Wine Etiquette Tips To Master


When you’re not in the privacy of your own home (snorting a bottle of wine down with your favorite coffee mug) you’ll want to employ some wine etiquette. Etiquette is one of those things that, on the surface, seems unnecessary but it is a powerful tool. It is the outward way of showing that you are, indeed, not a monster.

Wine Etiquette tips (e.g. you are not a monster)

Wine etiquette can be useful in many situations:

  • Business dinners
  • Meeting the parents
  • Formal gatherings
  • Classy dinner dates

So, here are some of the most important practices to become familiar with:

9 Wine Etiquette Habits to Know

wine-folly-holding-a-wine-glassHold your glass by the stem or the base.
wine-folly-smelling-wineSmell your wine. Sniff it, taste it, and think about it.
wine-folly-glass-lip-marksTry to drink from the same position on your wine glass to reduce unsightly mouth marks
wine-folly-how-to-open-wineWhen opening a wine bottle, try to do it quietly, like a ninja
wine-folly-clinking-glasses-so-they-dont-breakWhen clinking: clink glasses bell to bell (it reduces breakage) and look your clinking-buddy in the eye.
wine-folly-holding-a-wine-bottlePouring wine? hold the bottle towards the base.
wine-folly-standar-pour-sizeFill your glass less than half way to give your wine room to breathe.
wine-folly-servings-of-wineTry to keep your portion of drinking equivalent to the other people around you.
wine-folly-almost-empty-barolo-bottleOffer wine to others before pouring seconds for yourself.

Break the Ice

One of our favorite restaurant tricks is to preorder a bottle of white or sparkling wine for the table before people are seated. People melt with delight when the bottle comes out before they’ve even had a chance to look at a menu. And, you’ll be the guy/girl who was thoughtful enough to pull it off. Ooo!

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AboutMadeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly