7 Things You Should Never Do When Ordering Wine

Take a cue from our wine expert, Amy Collins, on how to be a good wine drinker in public.

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This article originally appeared on SouthernLiving.com.

See what peeves New Orleans-based wine expert, Amy C. Collins, the writer behind the wine blog Pig & Vine, when customers come in to order. You could be shorting yourself out of a good pour if you’re doing any of these.

  1. Don’t try to fake it if your wine knowledge is limited. A good server is open to helping you learn.
  2. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. We guarantee it won’t be the first time your server or sommelier hears, “I don’t know what you mean by full-bodied.” If, for some reason, they’re condescending to you, shake it off. No one likes sour grapes.
  3. Don’t smell the cork. Contrary to popular belief, it won’t tell you anything about the wine.
  4. Don’t worry about a party foul. If you spill your wine, here’s an easy trick for removing that red wine stain.
  5. Don’t be afraid to mispronounce a wine you want to try. No one is born knowing this stuff!
  6. Don’t be afraid to talk money upfront. If you don’t want to spend more than $60 on a bottle, say so.
  7. Don’t stick to the same old thing because you know it. Live a little, try something new! Ask your server or sommelier to recommend something a little different than your normal go to bottle.

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Use these tips when you explore all the great wineries throughout the South.