Have you ever wondered why servers at restaurants pour a tasting before they pour to the rest of the table? They do it to give the host (or whoever ordered the wine) an opportunity to taste the wine and check if it’s good or not.
And have you ever wondered why people return a bottle of wine? You usually do it for 2 reasons:
- The server recommended a wine and you don’t like it (that’s easy)
- The wine is faulty (not so easy)
So how do you know the wine is faulty? It’s tricky but I think there are 2 things you should look for:
- Cork. By far the most common fault, it’s usually caused by a faulty cork (therefore the name). A corked wine smells like cardboard (seriously!). Get a piece of cardboard and smell it. If a wine smells like that, return it.
- Oxidized. You probably know what vinegar and nail varnish smells like. If a wine smells like any of those two items, return it.
If a wine is faulty, by all means return it and don’t let the server convince you otherwise. There are many other wine faults but I find these two to be the most prevalent. In any case, if a wine just doesn’t taste “right” you should complain. For the most part I find servers helpful and they will tell you if it’s a wine feature or a fault.
I hope this is helpful. Cheers!
Image: Creative Commons, chrisgriffith