Order of Wine Service
Begin the meal with the most temperate wine and progress to the headiest and most fragrant.
At a simple meal where one wine is served, chose a wine that best compliments the main course.
When two wines are served, serve in the following orders:
- sparkling wine is served before still wine;
- dry wine before sweet wine;
- light wine before heavy wine;
- young red wine before mature red wine; and
- ordinary wine before fine wine.
The following order of wine is suggested for a multi-course meal:
- Appetizers: Aperitifs, dry sherry, dry champagne, and dry white wine
- Soup: White burgundy, dry champagne, chablis, or sherry (when sherry is an ingredient in soup)
- Fish: Dry champagne or dry white wine, such as white burgundy, chablis, chardonnay, and sauvignon blanc
- Fowl: Dry champagne or dry white wine, such as alsatian, pinot blanc, semillon, sylvaner, and traminer
- Game: Dry red wine, such as barbera, burgundy, cabernet sauvignon, gamay, pinot nair, or zinfandel
- Red Meat: Dry red wine, such as burgundy or claret, or those listed under "Game”
- Salad: no wine is served
- Cheese: Dessert wine, such as madeira, muscatel, tawny port, sweet sherry, or tokay
- Dessert: Sweet champagne, such as doux, or dessert wine, such as madeira, malaga, marsala, port, sauterne, and sweet sherry
- Fruit: Dessert wine
- Chocolate: Port or cream sherry
- Mike Lininger, Editor, Etiquette Scholar
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