Wine tasting: the rules of bon ton

27 October 2021

Enjoying a good wine while sitting at the table with your friends or in sweet company, is always a good habit.

Although it is a sweet pleasure, however, wine also has its rules, which must be respected and followed: who should be served first? Does the wine you chose match that particular menu? Is the glass you selected the right one? Tasting a good wine and sharing it with whoever we decide, therefore, becomes a well-defined path, an engaging experience capable of integrating culture, habits and love for one's own land.

How to pour wine: the importance of first impressions

The etiquette suggests to take care of the combinations between dishes and wines, as well as of the choice of the glasses for the diners. The rules of bon ton are very clear in this regard: women first, then the men and finally the hosts. But how is wine poured and how is it served to the diners?

Wine should always be served by placing ourselves behind the diner and pouring it from the right side: this behavior seems to come from the times of the Medici in Florence, when poisonings were particularly widespread. In fact, at the time, rings often contained substantial doses of poison which, when the wine was poured from the left, garnished the victim's drink by letting the poison fall into the glass.

Although times have changed, it is always better not to take risks: pouring the wine from the left could still bring bad luck!

How to hold the glass of wine: elegance and respect

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Holding a glass of wine in your hand is not too daring a task, but there is still a right way – and a wrong one. The general rule is to always hold the stem of the glass and not the belly: only the first three fingers of the hand must come into contact with the glass, while the ring and little fingers should simply remain resting on the base of the glass, in the way as natural as possible.

Finally, what about the famous whirling rotation of the glass of wine during tastings? Does it really bring some benefit or is it just a splendid and famous scenic effect?

In fact, the main reason why we proceed with this practice is the oxygenation of the wine: during the tasting phase, the rotation of the wine serves to aerate the liquid and to combine oxygen with its aromatic particles, favoring its propagation.

It can therefore be deduced that rotation is necessary, above all for some types of wines, like for example all structured reds subjected to a long aging process, where only aromas imprisoned for a long time in the bottle can express themselves.

Wine tasting is therefore a careful and meticulous process, with peculiar characteristics and rules to be followed: a splendid journey into the wine culture, to be sipped slowly, with great respect and curiosity.

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