When it comes to performing, in many situations, studies have found that “confidence matters just as much as ability.” Your mindset and self-confidence can actually impact the way you complete a task. From reducing your own stress levels to convincing others that you’re an expert, confidence and performance are undeniably linked. This is absolutely true when going on a date, as confidence is frequently ranked as one of most attractive qualities in a partner. One of the first moments on many dinner dates is the beverage order. If you plan to order wine, there can be a lot of pressure in knowledgeably ordering a glass or a bottle. Thankfully, there are helpful strategies for boosting your confidence when placing a wine order.
Whether you’re ordering the salmon or the steak, you can use these four tips to confidently order wine while on your next date.
Attend a wine tasting before your date
Want to be an expert on wine when ordering? Get first-hand knowledge of multiple varietals by attending a wine tasting. Wine tastings are commonly offered at wine stores and wineries, and often feature wines that range in sweet and dry flavor profiles. When attending a wine tasting, be sure to ask questions about each kind you sample, and make notes so that you can review what you’ve learned just before your evening out.
Get a basic idea of what pairs well
Planning to split a bottle of wine with your date? In addition to knowing his or her preferences, it is also good to know what wines pair well with the dishes you plan on ordering. Looking to enjoy red meat? Bold red wines such as Syrah and Cabernet are winning choices. Plan to choose lighter dishes, such as fish and vegetarian options? Skip the red wine menu and opt for dry or rich white wines.
Request recommendations from the sommelier (if possible)
Many high-end restaurants have sommeliers (also known as wine stewards). Requesting recommendations from this professional will immediately establish you as an expert. This is also an excellent way of navigating a more complex wine selection. Unsure of how to pronounce ‘sommelier’? Be sure to listen to the pronunciation of this word before heading out to the restaurant.
Know what to expect when being served your wine
Servers at most restaurants are expected to follow a specific set of steps when serving a bottle of wine to a table. While these won’t apply if you are ordering by the glass, it is good to know how to properly receive your wine when ordering a bottle. First, be sure to verify that the wine is indeed what you ordered. Next, inspect the sides of the cork for stains. If you find stains on the side of the cork (rather than on the bottom alone), there is the possibility that the bottle wasn’t sealed properly. Finally, you’ll be given the opportunity to taste the wine. The purpose of this step is not to see if you enjoy the flavor, but to confirm that the wine tastes as it should.
Take your confidence to the next level on your upcoming date by knowing how to look like a wine pro. Attending wine tastings, studying infographics, knowing your own taste preferences, and requesting sommelier recommendations are exceptional ways to achieve this goal.