The wine label to save you some embarrassment

Food and drinks

The wine label to save you some embarrassment

A waiter serves South African wine at Hemingways Nairobi.PHOTO | BOWL



  • Never hold a wine glass near the bowl. Hold by the foot of the glass.
  • Mixing soda or juice with wine is not something you would want to be seen doing.

It reaches a certain stage in life where you shouldn’t drink or serve bad wine. Period. You shouldn’t be serving wine in fun glasses either, and when you are at this level, you and your guests should also master the etiquette of drinking wine to enjoy its flavors and aromas.

So this holiday season why not elevate the dining experience with a great wine label.

Hold the wine glass

Never hold a wine glass near the bowl. Hold by the foot of the glass. Raison? Your body heat usually increases the temperature of wine more quickly. It changes the flavor of the wine.

Holding the glass by the stem maintains an appropriate temperature longer, allowing you to fully enjoy the smooth unfolding of the aroma and taste of the wine.

Nose wine

Tilt the glass elegantly away from you. Check it out. You are trying to decipher the age of the wine. Pale means you’re drinking young wine, probably not aged, while darker means it’s been aged in oak barrels for years.

Sniff it. The taste of your wine is really in your nose. You can’t like a wine because it doesn’t have a sweet taste, you like wine because it tastes balanced, harmonious and is not offensive.

Stir the wine to introduce oxygen, thus amplifying the flavors.

Red wine and headaches

Red wine has a reputation for causing headaches. But if you drink good quality wine, you won’t get headaches.

Rosa Ali, a wine importer, explains that headaches are usually caused by sulfites used as preservatives in some wines. To avoid headaches, choose a quality bottle and drink water before and between your glasses of wine. Also, line your stomach with food before you drink wine.

“As with all alcoholic drinks, take your rhythm to avoid getting drunk quickly,” she says.

You can also drink red wine that is low in tannins like a pinot noir or if it’s a sweet wine, look for ones that are naturally fermented with no added sugars.

Mix soda or water with wine

Some things are downright wrong. Mixing soda or juice with wine is not something you would want to be seen doing.

Wine is an acquired taste, and your palate will guide you towards what you like and what not. Mixing wine with soda contaminates the flavors and deteriorates the structure of the wine.

“The idea is to develop the palate for different wines. It is not difficult to find the perfect wine, ”explains Rosa.

Break the rules, but the match shouldn’t be a disaster

You can break the rules, that red wine with red meat, white wine with white meat… but you have to understand wines. Look for wines that are not dominated by the flavors of the food. For example, the meat goes well with old chardonnay, which is a white wine.

Let the wine complement the food

The general rule of thumb is to start your guests with sparkling wine, then light white wines, then as main courses are served, introduce woody red wines and end lunch or dinner with dessert wine.

“Dessert wines usually come from old cellars and are concentrated with a high content of alcohol and sugars, so you don’t have to pour a lot into the glasses,” Rosa explains.

If you’re serving a main course, offer two wines so people have a choice: a Chardonnay and a full-bodied red Cabernet Sauvignon.

If you have a favorite wine

If you have a wine that you want to drink at your host’s house, and you follow some common courtesy rules, it will work for everyone. The correct procedure is to speak to the host so that he or she can help you serve him or her.

For example, you could say, “I have my favorite wine, can you serve it with the ribs?” Going into someone’s house and putting a bottle on the table, opening it and pouring it for yourself is not right. Even if your wine is of better quality!

Storage of wine after opening

A good wine can be kept for two weeks. If the wine bottle has a cork stopper open it and after serving push it back but make sure it is clean and uncontaminated. If it is a screw cap, close it tightly and place it in the refrigerator.

Some wines become flat, do not pour it, cook with it. Marinate your beef with it and when cooking, let the wine evaporate so that the meat is not so wine (y).

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