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Dec 30, 2011 12:18 PM

Sharing Wine at a Restaurant (or anywhere really)

Question: Say you're out to dinner w/ 2 other couples and a $100+ bottle of wine is ordered for the table. You like it a lot but one of the guests (not your husband or wife) doesn't and plans to leave it. Would it be ok for you to finish their wine and to do so from their glass if they are of the opposite sex?

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  1. It depends on ....if I would kiss them :)
    For business dinner- nope.
    For a friends dinner- certainly!
    If possible, I would also prefer to pour their glass into my own wine glass and probably not just drink directly from their glass....unless we were very close friends.

    Letting good wine go to waste is a far more serious offense than any etiquette breach, in my opinion :)

    1. I'd go with: Ok if you bought the bottle. Not ok if you split the cost; you never know if his/her partner was planning to finish it, and there might be weirdness when the bill comes. Either way, probably better off pouring into your glass rather than drinking straight from their glass.

      3 Replies
      1. re: jonoropeza

        But is it at all suggestive or inappropriate considering that a glass is being shared essentially?

        1. re: Chinon00

          Well... I know some sad folks who couldn't make full frontal nudity suggestive. On the other hand, was once friends with a girl who could make "pass the broccoli" extremely suggestive, as well as highly inappropriate.... ;)

        2. re: jonoropeza

          "Either way, probably better off pouring into your glass rather than drinking straight from their glass."

          Good point, and well worth the consideration. In the case of my wife, I seldom would bother, but with any other, then yes, I would pour.


        3. Seriously? ........... what has their sex got to do with this? Suggestive? Inappropriate (presumably from a sexual perspective)? Really? I can think of reasons why it may be inappropriate to drink from someone else's glass, more if they've already tried some, but none of them have anything to do with their sex.

          7 Replies
          1. re: Midlife

            To be clear I got in trouble w/ my SO for finishing a glass of wine of another woman. If it were a guy she wouldn't have had a problem. It's more of an ettiquette question;]

            1. re: Chinon00

              Yes, I'd also agree there's an etiquette issue here. I was once at a business dinner where my boss had bought the table a couple of bottles of very expensive Bordeaux (Ch. Margaux actually). At the end of the dinner one of the group had left most of a glass at the table. When the group was out of range my boss disappeared for a while. I had $20 on where he had gone......... and I won. ;o]

              I'd agree it is bad etiquette but I see absolutely no connection to the sex of any of the people involved.

              1. re: Midlife

                I have never understood buying great wine for those who would not appreciate it. With groups pour a small sample see if they like it and then pour them more.

                1. re: wineglas1

                  Just to clarify a little...... this WAS at a restaurant and the wine was poured by the server. It was also in Hong Kong. some 25 years ago, so it's possible the staff was not all that aware of the wine's stature?

                2. re: Midlife

                  Sex comes in due to the intimacy implied in sharing.

                  1. re: Chinon00

                    Well, it sounds like there is more to the story. When you are friends with someone -same sex or opposite sex- it is socially acceptable to give them a "greeting hug", cheek kiss or air kiss, pat them on the back....or share a glass or bite of food. Most grown ups don't think that those behaviors somehow imply sexual intimacy...or that you want to have sex with them. Good lord.

              2. re: Midlife

                Reminds me of a little story that John Coykendall, Master Gardner at Blackberry Farm, loves to tell, when talking about drinking gourds. He claims that he was hiking in the Tennessee mountains. He was very hot, tired and thirsty. He came upon a homestead, with the family sitting on the front porch. He asked the father if he could have a drink from the well, and the father invited him to help himself. He looked at the children on the porch, and noticed that one of the daughters had several sores on the right side of her mouth. At the well, there was a single drinking gourd. He thought about the daughter and the sores, and tried to remember if she was left-handed, or right-handed. When he could not recall, he decided to hold the gourd out and drink from the end, opposite from the "handle." After having taken a big drink, the daughter commented, "Dad, he drinks just like I do!"

                Maybe something to think about, and if you meet up with John at Blackberry Farm, tell him that Hunt told you to have him retell the "drinking gourd" story.


              3. No.

                And it wouldn't matter if it was the opposite sex, same sex, or a different sex. Unless of course I am having sex with that person after the glass of wine.

                1. Interesting question.

                  There have been some times, where I WOULD finish the wine, but it depends on the wine, and whether that person actually drank from the glass.

                  With my wife, I have no problem finishing a wonderful old Bdx., that she leaves, as it's not really her thing - like many VP's, she likes them a bit younger. With other folk, many variables. Still interesting thread.