How to Pick the Right Wine for Hot Date

This is arguably the hardest of all the categories to get right, since its success depends as much on your attitude as the actual wine you order. That’s why it’s really important to talk to your date about their preferences before you order. They may well not have strong opinions either way, but it really helps to know if, say, they don’t like Chardonnay.

Once likes and dislikes have been safely worked out, it’s on to deciding how much to spend. This, in a sense, is the tough bit. After all, we are all capable of ordering a less-than-brilliant wine from a wine list, but if we do it by choosing the cheapest on the menu then we can fairly stand accused of being stingy.

So without bankrupting yourself, I suggest trawling the wine list at a slightly higher level than you would usually. As a general rule of thumb, take the price of the house wine, double it and add a bit. At that level you should still be some way below the super-expensive wines (which could lay you open to charges of being flash), but safely into some pretty good stuff.

At this price, the wine ought to speak for itself, but even if it’s a bit disappointing you can hardly be blamed. Having sought a consensus on what to choose at the start and then spent a decent amount on trying to achieve it, you can squarely be said to have done your best. And on a hot date you can’t really ask for anything more.

If you are going classical, do your homework

Ordering Old World classics like Bordeaux and Burgundy can impress, but it helps to know which vintages or producers to go for – and you don’t want to be lost in silent contemplation for ten minutes at the start of your date.

If you know the restaurant you’re going to beforehand, check out their wine list and do some research. (Heck, you can even take the list into a local wine merchant’s and ask them for help!) Either way, a bit of forward planning can help.


Start your date by ordering a couple of glasses of good champagne. It instantly gives the evening that special feel – and because of its bubbles, fizz lowers inhibitions more quickly, helping conversation flow.


Consider more expensive wines from cheaper countries – they tend to be soft, rich and flavourful. While not always a classic match, they give good bang for your buck and are very likeable.


Buy the cheapest wines on offer, even if your date isn’t a wine buff.


Spend ages agonizing over the wine list unless your date is a wine lover.

Filed Under: Food & Cooking


About the Author: Leona Kesler is a head-chef at a very popular food restaurant in New York. Also she is a blogger who shares her experiences, tips, and other informative details about food and cooking. Her recipes are featured on many magazines.

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