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Clutching your Wine the Proper Way

Specific rules come into play when you hold your drink.

If anything, just remember:

Always hold by the stem.

Clutching your cocktail correctly might be an often overlooked, but whether you’re a guest at a summer dinner party or the Cocktail Concierge at Happy Hour, these essential-yet-simple tips will remind you to grasp your glass the proper way.

Ikea Champagne Sparkling Wine Flute Glass Stemware

Sparkling Wine & Champagne:

Always hold your glass or flute by the stem.  Never hold by the “bowl,”  instead pinch the stem between your index finger and thumb. Otherwise, you might get called a “bowl chugger.” No thank you! When serving champagne or Prosecco place the flutes in the refrigerator beforehand to chill them. These bubbly drinks taste best chilled!  Put them in the refrigerator an hour and half before serving or in an ice bucket with an ice-water mixture at least 20 minutes before serving. For vintage-dated Champagne and other high-quality bubbly, however, you should let the bottle then warm up a bit if you don’t want to miss out on the mature character for which you’re probably paying extra.  Sparkling wine or champagne should be poured ¾ full as to not have a unlady like spill.

Ikea White Wine lass IvrigWhite Wine:

Much like the sparkling wines, hold the glass by pinching the stem between your index finger and thumb.  White wine and sparkling wines taste best when chilled.  Holding it by the “bowl” warms your drink.  White wines are poured filling your glass 1/2 full.

Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, White Zinfandel and other refreshing white wines should also be chilled to refrigerator temperature (usually 35 to 40 degrees) for an hour and a half before serving. But the better examples, such as barrel-aged wines like Fume Blanc (made from Sauvignon Blanc grapes) will improve if brought out 20 minutes early or allowed to warm up slightly during hors d’ouevres or dinner.

Chardonnay, White Burgundy and other rich, full-bodied and barrel-fermented white wines of high quality taste their best at classic “cellar temperature,” or 55 degrees. Winemakers in France’s Burgundy region know what they’re doing when they offer tastes to visiting journalists and wine buyers directly from the barrels of Chardonnay in their cool, humid underground cellars. So put these into the fridge an hour and half before serving, but bring them out 20 minutes early to warm a bit.

Ikea Red Wine Glass IvigRed Wine:

First of all, a bottle of red should always be uncorked or poured into a decanter for a while before serving so it has time to breathe. This improves the taste enormously!  Contrary to popular belief, red wine glasses should be held by the stem.  Like white wines and champagnes, red wine is best served a cooler than room temperature.    Almost all red wines show their best stuff when served at about 65 degrees—cool, but warmer than cellar temperature. This is not room temperature, unless you happen to live in a Scottish castle or in San Francisco during July. So if you don’t keep your red wine in a cool cellar or cooled storage unit, you will enjoy it more if you chill it for 20 minutes in the refrigerator before serving. Holding it by the “bowl” warms your Merlot or Cabernet.   Drinking your wine from the stem of glass prevents your fingers from leaving smudgy prints.   Pour your red wine glasses a 1/3 of a way full.

Adapted from:
8 Comments Post a comment
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    July 14, 2012
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      July 15, 2012
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    July 15, 2012
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  3. Tonda Hopman #

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    July 25, 2012
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    August 9, 2012
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      August 21, 2012

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