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Wine 101: How to Pour Wine

Wine 101: How to Pour Wine

Pouring wine properly will impress your guests or at least give you confidence when pouring for a date or gathering. Below are tips to pour like a pro.


Present the wine to your guests so they can see the label and know what they are drinking. In a restaurant, the server should present the wine to the one who ordered it to confirm it is the correct wine.

Leave the glass on the table while pouring, rather than bringing the glass up to meet the bottle.

Wipe the top of the opened bottle with a clean cloth napkin, cleaning away any cork debris or dust.

Have a second cloth napkin handy to catch any drips when pouring.

Guests first and ladies first, generally.

Pour still wine in the center of the glass. For sparkling wine, to prevent a large bubble head from forming, pour a small amount in the glass and wait for the froth to settle, then fill the glass ¾ full. This is called “priming” the glass. Or for a more casual way of pouring, pick up and tilt the glass and pour down the side to preserve the bubbles.

To avoid drips, rotate the bottle away from you as you are finishing the pour. This can take some practice.

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Never fill a glass to the top. It should be at most halfway full and preferably two-thirds full. A standard glass of wine is about 6 oz. Measure ¾ cup of water and pour it into a wine glass to get an idea of how much to pour.

Wipe the neck of the bottle after each pour to be sure nothing drips down the bottle.

Place white wine or champagne in an ice bucket after pouring.


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