The other night we had a dining experience that made me ponder this and I would love to hear your thoughts on how long is too long...When I talk about too long, I’m talking about how long is it acceptable for a bottle of wine to be open and still be fit for sale in a venue?
We dined at a restaurant (mid-week) a few weeks ago which had an extensive list of wines by the glass, and I ordered a glass of wine.
When the wine came out it tasted flat and oxidised, like the bottle had been open for quite some time. So I asked the waiter when the wine had been opened, and if they thought it was of an acceptable standard to sell.
The next thing that happened threw me. I have always worked in restaurants and venues where if a wine has been open for a while I would always replace the glass if the wine wasn't up to scratch.
I think any wine opened on the same day should be acceptable, and in some cases on the second day, and that venues should be writing the date on the bottle once it’s opened. But even so, I would replace a wine if the customer thought it was past it.
This waiter told me the venue had a three-day policy on wines served by the glass being of an acceptable quality. He then went on to say that I could either have the glass in my hand, or he would replace it with another wine but not the one I had chosen, essentially refusing to open a fresh bottle of the same wine.
I was a little floored to be honest, and decided to avoid an argument that I’d just get a different wine that had been opened that day. I wasn’t willing to pay $13 for a glass of wine that was oxidised and not tasting great.
Quite often we choose not to complain about the quality of food and beverage even if it’s not up to scratch, however on the other hand if we bought a top with a hole in it from a clothing store we would expect a refund or for it to be replaced.
I must say, this service made me judge this venue on what otherwise would have been a great dining occasion.
So how long is too long with wine? Love to hear your thoughts
Kate Bickford MD & Owner - BK AGENCY: