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Can I refuse wine at the restaurant ?

· Wine Culture

We all know a friend who once got unsatisfied about the wine choice during a night out at the restaurant, especially because he/she picked it.

“ I don’t like the fruit taste, I should have rejected it… ”, your friend complained during the whole meal.

In order to avoid him/her spoil your next dinner out, here are a few guidelines to remember in the future !

Your choice is your responsibility

While reading through the long wine list at the restaurant, remember to make a choice that will match the dishes that you and your guests have picked.

Click on the link to learn how to make the right choice

The wine that you pick should also be one that your guests would appreciate. If they are not really into wine, they will probably prefer something approachable, young and fruity – and cheap.

Some people are easily irritable when it comes to picking the right wine…

No matter what bottle you decide to pick, you are responsible for your choice and if you discover after the waiter opens it that the wine style does not suit your taste, you can just hope to be more lucky next time – or you can do more homework !

The tasting evaluation is important

After you chose a bottle of wine, the waiter is supposed to open it in front of the guests and let the person who chose the wine to taste it.

The person tasting, even though might not be an expert, should go through the three steps of wine tasting : the look, the smell, the taste.

But some people will stop after sniffing the wine and will not bother tasting it. Why is that ? It is because the smell of the wine can be enough to make a decision.

Two scenarios are possible

In most cases, after tasting the wine, the person will approve it and let the waiter pour some to the other guests.

But what does « approving the wine » mean ? As we saw, it has nothing to do with suiting the taste of the person tasting it. It rather means that the wine does not show any faults.

The most common wine faults

If you smell something strange or really unpleasant in your glass, it might be flawed. Here are the most common wine faults and how to spot them :

  • Cork taint

Also named 2,4,6-Trichloroanisole (TCA) after the chemical contaminant that is transferred to the wine from the cork. It smells like wet paper or cardboard.

  • Oxidation

It can happen with older wines which have not be stored properly. The color looks brownish and it smells like vinegar.

  • Sulfur

Sulfur is added in small amounts to most of the wines to help stabilize it. Sometimes, sulfur compounds can smell like a stuck match or cabbage. They usually disappear after 15 minutes.

  • Heat damage

If the wine is stored unproperly in too high temperatures, it can smell like a cooked wine reduction sauce, sort of sweet but processed.

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Founded in 2018 by Matthieu Ventelon, Hedonia is the first institution in China combining professional Wine and Etiquette expertise in the same training offer.

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