Dining Tips

Learning to Speak Wine

Be specific when asking for wine help.
Be specific when asking for wine help.

When asking for wine recommendations, be specific about what style of wine you prefer. You can help your server make better suggestions if you avoid generic, subjective terms like “dry,” “smooth,” and “big” in favor of more specific descriptors like “spicy,” “earthy” or “fruit-forward.”  Instead of critiquing a wine because it has “a bite”— which can have a different meaning to different people—say it has “too much acidity.” It can also be helpful to let the waiter or sommelier know what other kinds of wine you like to drink.  Saying “I’ve been really into Spanish whites lately,” for example, can help the staff better understand your palate.  If you can articulate your preferences in wine more clearly, your server will have a much easier time finding something that suits your taste.

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