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Basic Wine Etiquette Tips Explored (Video)

Written by Madeline Puckette

Learn the most essential wine etiquette tips that everyone deserves to know.

Can’t stop swirling…

There is a lot to learn about etiquette. Yes, it is daunting – particularly because most etiquette appears quite frivolous on the surface.

After reading two books on the subject, one of them was old (free on kindle!) and one much newer, I started to notice a theme:

Etiquette tends to be more involved in places where people operate in high proximity to others. For example, just think about how much etiquette goes into being on a subway in New York!

Essentially, etiquette is how not to look like an animal to others.

We are human, which means we are essentially animals on some level.

We pick our noses. We scratch our butts. We do gross things.

Etiquette, on the other hand, is completely constructed by the culture and society we live in. It’s the human brain’s way of trying to go beyond what is animalistic and add a touch of consideration. When practiced, it provides a great deal of respect to others (and to oneself).

Since wine is almost always served in places where proper etiquette is in order, I’d like to offer you a few wine etiquette tips to practice. I promise they’re fun!

Hold a wine glass by the stem:

How to Hold a Wine Glass

There are various reasons for this, but ultimately, it doesn’t get smudge prints on the glass (proximity effect) and looks quite classy:


Drink from the same position on the rim for the same reason:

Drinking from the same position on the rim

You can learn to swirl wine by drawing little circles your hand:


Then, just remove your hand and you’ll be able to do it in the air:


One last and final thing: clink your wine glasses bowl to bowl. They are stronger at the sides and when you clink, it will make a cool “ding!”


Written byMadeline Puckette

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

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