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Everything you always wanted to know about wine but never dared to ask

In the following articles addressed to professionals, we suggest that you take an interest in serving wine in restaurants. Indeed, it is not enough to take the bottle out of the cellar: there are rituals of presentation and service for wine. Les Grappes gives you some tips on how to serve wine properly.

Temperature: a must

When serving, it is essential to be careful to present your wine at the right temperature. And there is no secret: each wine has a serving temperature.

Sweet wines and champagnes should be served at around 8°C. Then, structured or ample white wines, such as Great Burgundies, should be served from 10 to 12°C. Fresh red wines, such as Beaujolais or Gamay, are intended to be served between 12 and 15°C. Finally, structured red wines such as Bordeaux, and powerful red wines are served between 16 and 18°C.
Be careful, we often tend to serve wines that are too hot! You must be careful to keep the temperature at 18°C maximum. It is better to serve a wine that is too fresh than too hot, even if it means gently heating it up afterwards.

Respecting the serving temperature of a wine will allow it to reveal all its flavours and potential.

Download our complete Guide - Opening a Restaurant

The presentation of the wines:

Before serving a wine, it must be presented to the table. This begins with the transport of the bottle, which varies according to the type of wine. For a red wine, the bottle must be straight: the transport is done on a metal coasters, or a plate. As for white wines, you have to put the bottle in a bucket, which you then fill half full of ice and water. Place everything on a plate during transport.

When you arrive at the customer's table, place the whole thing on the pedestal table, then present the bottle(s) of wine to the customer who placed the order. To do this, clearly announce the bottles, and present the bottles by placing the label in front of the customer, passing by his right. For white wines, it is agreed to take the bottle out of the bucket, drain it, and present it without wiping it. Put it back in the bucket to open it.

Then, when you present a wine, you must announce the appellation, the name of the wine, the vintage and classification if there is one, the name of the merchant, the château or the producer.

The choice of glasses

In restaurants, transparent and colourless stemmed glasses are used to enhance the colour of the wine. The glass must be impeccable, clean. Then, the size and volume of the glasses vary according to the type of wine served. There is a model of glasses for tasting, to which are added the shapes of glasses specific to wine-growing regions. We will essentially use the following models:

Glass for Bordeaux

Glass for Burgundies

Glass for Alsace

Champagne glass

After the opening.......

All bottles ordered at the beginning of the service must always be opened: the wine is served before the dish it should accompany.
After opening the bottle, you must give the person who ordered it a taste and wait for their agreement to serve others. Ladies should always be the first to be served; and don't forget to serve the person who tasted the wine again.
During the service, you must stand to the right of the customer holding the bottle in your hand and never hide the label. For white wine, fill the glass one-third full; for red wine, half full. Once the wine is poured, rotate the bottle and raise it. Once the neck is wiped, you can serve the next customer.

It is also advisable to remember to serve the guests again during the meal: remember to make a wine service before clearing the dishes. The glasses must never be empty: it is a fault of service.

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