One minute everything can be relaxed going swimmingly on a first date; great conversation, good food, then bam-you are handed the wine list and the pressure is on. Even for an avid wine drinker or wine club member the first date wine choice can be a challenge. So what’s the right approach for choosing the right first date wine?
If you go too cheap or ordinary you will not impress or give a notion that you have any idea about wines in general. If you order a bottle that is over-the-top expensive you’ll just be showing off. Not only have you just ordered a wine that is super expensive, you are now sitting with your fingers crossed just hoping that it is good.
These tips will help you make a great first impression with a solid wine choice.
1. Avoid the Mass Produced Pinot Grigio
Most likely, you date has recently enjoyed plenty of glasses of these with her girlfriends. Opt instead for a wine that may have similar flavors, but is of a different grape variety and region. To stand out in this arena, try ordering an albarino from Northwestern pain or a Grenache blanc from France’s Roussillon.
2. Avoid Overripe Cabernet, Merlot, and Shiraz
These wines, that are often presented in bottles that makers to more time with than the wines themselves tend to be super expensive, but not worth the money in taste and enjoyment. Avoid drinking a red that will have a high-octane burn and ask the sommelier for a small-production, more balanced cabernet.
3. Do go for the unexpected wine
It’s the wine buyers version of playing the bad boy. Handling that wine list like a boss and ordering a wine that is decidedly unexpected-yet still very drinkable. Again, here is a great place to utilize your wine club membership to get a feel for some daring wines so you have a few ideas of what you like under your belt. Consider some spicy red zinfandels, pinot noirs, or Argentinean sparkling whites, just to name a few.
4. Cheap VS. Inexpensive
When choosing a wine, it is imperative to remember that there is a big difference between cheap wine and inexpensive wines. While there are an increasing number of great wines available at a reasonable price, there are always cheap wines that lack flavor and character as well. Having an eye for a few inexpensive, yet great tasting wines is a skill worth showing off. To achieve success here, avoid mass marketing cheap wines that line retail shelves and opt for wines from lesser known regions or grape varieties. They are often delicious and pair very well with food.
5. Ask Questions
One of the best tips of them all is to utilize your sommelier at the restaurant or your wine club membership in advance. Women love a man who has enough confidence to ask questions in order to secure a great end result.
Bring these tips along with you the next time you head out on a first date and you can be confident in your ability to make a strong wine selection when you find the wine list in your hands.