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Get That Wine Open!

One of the most important things we can do as wine servers and presenters in the restaurant world is to get our guests’ red wines open as soon as possible. Allowing the wine to open up in the glass will radically improve the overall experience of the meal and especially the wine.

A great server or wine steward will ask the diners to select their red wines as early in the meal as possible. The perfect opportunity is to have them select a wine while they order a cocktail or aperitif. This allows the server to immediately satisfy them with a beverage and then provides the time to track down the wine, check that appropriate glasses are available etc.. We want to get the bottle approved and opened and then pour a few ounces poured into each glass. The wine in the glass starts opening up as well as allowing more surface area in the bottle for the same process to happen in the bottle.
The added benefits of this proactive style of service include:

  • Server confidence will lend an air of professionalism in their service from the start.
  • Having the aroma of the wine around the table will stimulate diners’ appetites.
  • Human nature will cause the guests to start tasting the wine earlier in the meal. This could lead to added bottles needed for the meal and added revenues.

All this being said; the true test of great service is making sure the customer is, in the end, satisfied. If they want to wait, we wait. However, gentle persuasion by a confident server might really make the difference in the overall dining experience.