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What Bartenders Actually Think of Your Wine Order

by Reda Wigle Dec 13, 2014

I work in a wine bar. As such, I am well versed in pretense, snide cork sniffing, and long-winded soliloquies about tannins, boutique vineyards, and oak vs. steel. Below is a list of common wines and judgments about the people that order them. In fairness, if you are polite and leave a generous tip you can order anything, even a glass of the dishwasher’s sweat, without scrutiny.

Chardonnay: You are a middle-aged woman or a bottom, possibly both.

Pinot Noir: You have seen the Paul Giamatti classic Sideways.

Merlot: You haven’t seen the Paul Giamatti classic Sideways.

Riesling: You enjoy the crisp taste of apples and alimony payments.

Biodynamic: You are a vegetarian with a deep love of astrology who may or may not recycle menstrual blood into garden fertilizer. You own at least one crystal.

Barolo: You are undeterred by price and appreciate the profound sense of belonging that organized crime provides.

Port: You own a lot of velvet.

Sauvignon Blanc: You like notes of freshly cut grass and are allergic to pubic hair. Unless you call it Sauv Blanc, then you are a person I want to punch.

Shiraz: You are fearless in the face of bold fruit and spice notes. You enjoy aromas of leather and smoke and dabble in BDSM.

White Zinfandel: You drink Mountain Dew for breakfast and might be wearing slippers.

Cabernet Sauvignon: You are patient and uncomplicated. You will argue the unsung genius of Bily Joel’s early work.

Malbec: You are easy to please, enjoy high elevations, and suffer from rare ailments related to blue-blood incest.

Gruner Veltliner: You are a free spirit dulled by a puritanical and domineering marriage. You pay cash to avoid leaving a paper trail.

Pinotage: You love dynamic hybrids, like World music and Pineapple kush.

Chenin Blanc: You love to try new things. You were an early adopter of vagazzling and jumpsuits as formal wear.

House red or white: Your lack of self-respect is evident and your acceptance of mediocrity will prevent you from ever being successful, even at buying house plants.

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