Wine is the staple ingredient at any dinner party… along with the food… obviously.
Taking the time to think about your wine selection is going to help make your night a success. We’re going to take you through everything you need to know when it comes to serving wine at a dinner party.
Types of Wine
You don’t need to serve all 5, but your options should fall into these categories:
You should think about which types of food you’re serving, and which wines will pair best. You also need to consider wine glass shapes and serving temperatures, and you need to avoid a couple of faux pas.
Wine Serving Rules
Here are some rules you should keep in mind to make sure your guests get the most out of your wine selection:
- White wine pairs best with white meat and fish
- Red wine works best with red meat, and you should avoid serving it with fish
- Try and serve white wine before red (if you can)
- Always serve simple/ lighter wines before complex/ heavier wines
- Aim to serve dry wines before sweet wines
- Serve each wine at the correct temperature (you can check bottle labels or research online to find the optimum temperature)
- Try and serve in the most suitable wine glass shape for each wine
- Don’t overfill the glass, wine glasses should only be filled to the widest point of the glass, to facilitate the best taste
The Nitty Gritty
Sparkling wine is the perfect welcome drink option. Champagne is great if it’s a real celebration, or Prosecco is perfect for those on a budget.
Best glass: flute or narrow tear drop with a tall stem
Serving temp: Ice cold
Dryer white wines are usually the best to serve at dinner parties as they go well with a wide range of foods, we recommend crisp Pinot Gris or Sauvignon Blanc.
Best glass: medium size, bulb shape
Serving temp: Fridge cold
If you’re serving red meat, red wine is a must. If you want something rich and dark go for a Cabernet Sauvignon, or if you want something a bit more versatile grab a Pinot Noir.
Best glass: large bulb shape glass
Serving temp: room temperature
If you’re serving a range of different foods and don’t want to be serving multiple wines, rosé wine is the one for you. It is the most adaptable and it goes will with both fish and meat.
Best glass: medium size, tear drop shape
Serving temp: Lightly chilled
This is the most overlooked of all the wines, but it is just as important as the rest, it shows you have gone the extra mile and it also compliments your dessert choice.
Best glass: small, bulb shape
Serving temp: room temp