Proper Wine Service

Proper Wine Service

Wine ServiceThere are several steps involved when it comes to presenting and pouring wine.  The following will guide you through some of the basic steps, but remember that each and every restaurant will have its own specific wine procedures so make sure that you follow those first.


1) Glassware
After the table orders a bottle of wine, the first thing you should do is get the appropriate glassware and bring that to the table.  The glassware should be placed to the right of each guest.  After you have distributed the glasses, you will then return to get the bottle of wine.


2) Presentation

With the bottle of wine cradled on your arm with a napkin underneath, present the bottle to the guest that originally ordered it.  Make sure to have the label facing the correct way. As you are showing the guest the label, tell them the year/vintage of the wine, the type of grape (varietal) and who makes the wine.


3) Opening

This is often times the trickiest part, but don’t worry with time it will get easier.  You will want to use your wine-key to cut the foil that is wrapped around the top of the wine bottle. Remember to keep the wine label towards the guests while you are doing this. Once  you have removed the foil, without spinning the bottle, you will then take it and put it in your apron.  Next, take the corkscrew from your wine-key and spin it into the cork, again, without spinning the bottle.  Once the corkscrew is completely down the cork, remove the cork gently.  Remove the cork from your wine-key and present it to the guest by placing it in front of them.


4) Pouring

Before you begin to pour the first glass of wine, make sure to wipe the lip of the wine bottle with your napkin. (Typically napkins are black)  After you have wiped the bottle, pour a small sample for the guest that did the ordering. Make sure to have your napkin in your opposite hand as you are pouring to catch any drips.  Once the guest has approved of the wine, pour them a full glass and then continue to pour the rest of guests in a clockwise position. Remember to always keep the label facing the guest.

Other Notes:


  • * Most restaurants will have wine buckets or chillers for white wines.  If a guest orders a white wine make sure to ask them if they would like it in a wine bucket to keep it chilled at their table, do not assume that they would.

  • Some restaurants and/or guests will prefer a more traditional type of pouring which would consist of starting with the host, then working clockwise but serving the women in the group first, then returning to the men.

  • Always hold glassware from the stem.  (Furthest from the top of the glass)

  • Make sure that wine glasses are polished and clean before you bring the glasses to the table.

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