Most people tend to go all out when it comes to hosting dinner parties for friends and family. From the food, table decor and crockery to the entertainment; hosts tend to take on more than they can chew. Of course, a dinner party is never truly complete without having wine on the menu. But, selecting the right wine for your guests can often be a pretty daunting task. There are so many different types to choose from, which often leaves people scratching their heads during a time when they are already busy organising everything else. For example, if they are hosting a dinner party for a large number of guests, then they may need to think about catering equipment hire to cook a lot of food. Either way, don’t be surprised if you find yourself dealing with a bit of stress when choosing wine for your dinner party. Not sure where to even begin? Here are our top tips and tricks for choosing the best wine for your dinner party.
Determine How Experienced Your Guests Are With Wine
Before you narrow down your focus, you should have a good think about who’s attending your dinner party. You need to know how experienced they are with wine or whether they are completely new to it and unaware of the incredible selection out there. Those who are completely new to wine might not be able to tell the difference between an aged bottle or a new one. However, guests that have extensive experience with wine tasting will likely recognise varietals and may even know how to tell the difference by region.
Ask Them What Their Preferences Are
Once you know how experienced your guests with wine, you should then find out what their preferences by asking the following questions:
- Do you prefer white wine or red wine?
- Do you have a preference for the country of origin?
- Do you prefer a certain varietal?
- How strong do you like your wine?
If your guests come back to you with varying responses or if they are not experienced enough to answer the questions, it will be best to select a few different bottles to cover the broader spectrum.
Pair Wines With Foods From The Same Region
It’s always a good idea to pair wine and food that come from the same regions. The same minerals and nutrients go into everything that is grown in the same region, including food and grapes. They are both exposed to the same weather and climate, including the amount of sun they get. This impacts the profile of wine and often result in the flavours matching the local cuisine. But as with everything, variability and experimentation can often lead to interesting new pairings.
Always Serve Wines At The Correct Temperature
Wine doesn’t have to be served a certain temperature as it’s typically down to personal preference. However, white wines and sparkling wines are normally served between 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are serving a full-bodied white or lighter red, then aim for 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Full-bodied red wines are normally served a little bit warmer, but everyone is different. If you are unsure, then it’s best to stick to around 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
Choose a Sweet Wine to Go With The Dessert
Chances are you are going to be serving a sweet dessert so you do not want to serve a wine that will never harmonise with the final course of your dinner party. A dessert that’s too sweet will never let the taste of a wine shine either. Your best option is to blend a sweet wine with a dessert that isn’t so sweet, so the flavour pulls though.
Visit Your Local Wine Cellar
The employees that work at your local wine cellar will be well versed in the world of wine and will be able to share their knowledge and expertise with you. It can be a great way of also tasting the wine before you purchase it. Even if you don’t have a wine cellar that is relatively close to your home, we recommend visiting one if you are entirely unsure of what wine to choose for your dinner party. However, it is important to remember that if you are unsure whether your guests will like a wine that you have tasted, it’s better to save that one for a later day.