Wine Faux Pas to Avoid

Drinking wine is usually a pretty enjoyable affair if you like the stuff (as many people do). Wine has a rich variety of flavor profiles available with the many varietals that exist. It goes great with food, a glass or two can give you a nice mild alcohol buzz, and hey, a glass a day of red wine is actually good for you! Not only good for your general health, but good for your skin, and good for aging well. It’s the reason Vine Vera uses resveratrol—one of the main ingredients that makes red wine good for you and your skin—in our own skincare collections, and themes many of those collections after various wine varietals, after all.

So yes, wine is pretty great, but ask yourself, do you know if you’re getting the most out of it? Are you being sure you actually savor and enjoy it, or are you falling into the trap of the various wine faux pas that can keep you from truly tasting your wine to its fullest? If you’re not sure, read on and find out, because we’re about to list some of the biggest wine faux pas, and how to avoid them.

Woman tasting red wine

Being Pretentious
It’s one thing to take your wine seriously and really savor it, but it’s quite another to put on unnecessary airs and scoff at people who don’t know all the right terms, or who don’t conform to arbitrary and snobbish rules (not to be confused with the rules on this list, which are intended to actually maximize your enjoyment of the wine). Being a snob towards someone who isn’t able to tell certain varietals apart, or uses their own descriptive language to describe the taste in a way that sounds “wrong” to you doesn’t actually help anyone. It just makes the other person feel bad and makes you look like a judgmental ass.

Red wine by the fire.

Heating Red Wine with A Radiator (or Any Other Fast Heating Method)
Unlike your average white, most red wines, with some exceptions, are better served at or just under room temperature, rather than excessively chilled. However, you will find that some methods of heating up red wine are better than others, and any method that changes the temperature too rapidly, like setting it on a radiator, is likely to damage the wine irreparably, taking away a lot of complexity and robustness from the flavor profile. It’s much better to just let the red wine gradually come closer to room temperature by setting it out on the counter an hour or so before you plan to open and drink it.

Woman holding a wine glass

Holding Wine Glasses by the Bowl
Now, to be clear, it would be very pretentious to “enforce” this rule on others, and it’s only a rule of thumb, which has exceptions. However, by and large, if you wine is served at a temperature that best suits that varietal, you want to do your best to make sure it stays at or around that temperature the whole time it’s in your glass, from the first sip to the last. Grasping the glass by the bowl will warm the wine over time, so don’t do it unless the wine was definitely served too cold.

Sangria pitcher

Putting Ice in Wine
This rule is not hard and fast, and you can break it if you feel the need. That said, especially if you paid a fair amount for the wine, icing it is just silly. It dilutes the carefully composed, balanced taste that comes with fine wine. If you want your wine cold, chill the bottle first; don’t add ice.

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