If If you are at a restaurant that offers proper wine service, it’s likely you will see what appears to be a well-rehearsed routine: A guest flips through the binder and consults with the sommelier a few times before making a final decision. The The somm will present the bottle to you and then open it up and test it. Then The server returns presents the corkThe host is given a small sample to taste and then he can decide if he wants more. The The diner approves a slightly awkward “this is great, thanks” Or, if it is faulty, send it back to begin the process again.

This The ritual between the sommelier, and his guest, usually ends when both parties have approved of the wine. But What if the diner changes their mind after the wine has been poured, but that somm has already moved on? VinePair tapped Mackenzie Khosla, sommelier at New York’s Wine-focused pizza restaurant Pasquale JonesTo help you navigate the tricky situation.

It’s It is important to note that the back and forth described above is not really to get the consumer’s opinion about the wine but to determine whether the wine is good. With The only time a guest would reject a wine bottle is if they detected flavors indicative of faults, such as cork taint or heat damage.


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Now. If a sommelier insists on a specific bottle and encourages the guest to taste it, then the dynamics change. If If the guest does not like the wine, the server might be willing to substitute something more in line with the guests’ usual preferences.

“If I recommend something to you that you don’t like, or if a bottle isn’t showing correctly, you absolutely can send it back and it’s my job to take it back,” Khosla says. “But if you order something on your own and then decide you don’t like it when it arrives, that doesn’t put the onus back onto the restaurant to take the loss.”

Let’s say that the guest approved and enjoyed the wine on first sniff — but after a few minutes, some unsavory aromas emerged. Khosla The somm should be able to address any concerns you may have at this time, as flaws in the glass can become apparent after some time.

“When I open a bottle, there’s usually some indication that the wine may develop a flaw soon, but in that scenario, I always let the guest know: ‘Hey, I think this is good, but let’s keep an eye on it and if it goes in the wrong direction, we’ll get something else open.'”

So Yes, the first glass leaves room for debate, but when the bottle is nearly empty, it’s another story.

“For me, it’s ultimately a volume thing,” Khosla says. “If you drank half the bottle but then decide something was wrong the whole time, there’s not much I can do about that. In this case, I’d say ‘too late’ has less to do with how much time and more to do with how much wine.”

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