The Dos and Don’ts to Finding Your Perfect Blend
Wine and Love – two of the most complicated, fascinating subjects that have been topics of conversation since the beginning of time. Whether you’re dating or winemaking, there seems to be no one-size-fits-all formula to follow, when each person’s preferences are subjective and tastes so varied. There are however, some general dos and don’ts we’d like to propose as you search for your perfect blend. So, whether you’re a seasoned expert, or are just having your first few sips of romance, it’s never a bad idea to sharpen up on these reminders while you put yourself out there during this month of love!
Don’t forget your manners – a hint from the Hoofmeisie and Seun
Tradition certainly has its place in the world of wine and dating. It provides a sense of stability and relies on age old values that have stood the test of time, for good reason. Manners are for free – so don’t forget to use them! Punctuality, politeness, putting away your phone, “please”, “thank you”, and offering to pay, are all things both parties can do. More than proving the fact that your mother raised you right, manners show you’re mindful of the bare minimum your date deserves.
Don’t underestimate the power of listening, like the Mansplaining Oom (or Tannie)
The purpose of a date is to connect with another human. You’re not here to prove a point, give a lecture, or assume anything. Ask good questions and allow your date the space to light up about the silliest things that excite them, without interrupting! Actively listen, laugh with one another and leave having learned a few new things – about them, and maybe even yourself, too.
Don’t just talk about your work, Shanghai Real Estate Mogul
We get it, you were a millionaire before 25 and you’ve only ever worked a four-hour week. It’s impressive! But we want to know if you can invest in us too. When work is your world, it can seem that you haven’t paid much attention to the rest of your life. So broaden the conversation, and let us in on what you do with the other twenty-three hours of your day – we want to want to be part of it.
Don’t embarrass your date, Try-Before-You-Buy Guy
Particularly on a first date, comfort can feel hard to come by, so you should look for ways to put your date at ease, and steer clear from anything that would make them cringe. When ordering a wine, don’t ask for a sample of more than the bottle you’ve decided on. If you wanted to do a full wine tasting, you should have chosen accordingly. Pro tip for picky drinkers: play it safe and order by the glass, otherwise you run the risk of appearing tacky.
Don’t just talk about the wine… ahem, Backseat Sommelier
While a bottle of red can do a wondrous job of setting the mood, easing nerves and turning up the romance on a date, don’t make it the main character. While you stare lovingly at the label, we’re wondering if you even know our origin story. Don’t bother the server about the decanter they’ve provided and critique the curvature of the glass… but if you have to talk about the wine, let it be a conversation, and not just a monologue.
Don’t shy away from sharing your opinion, like the Soet Tand Tannie (or Oom)
While you may believe your date is looking for someone to agree with everything they say, authenticity is a rarer quality to come by. Don’t disguise yourself as a light Rosé, when you’re really a full bodied Shiraz. While your flavours may not sit well with everyone, at the very least, don’t strip off qualities that make you, you. There will always be someone else to enjoy your nuances and complexities.
Don’t be so flashy, Big Spender
This is just a date, not a 50th anniversary. We see the Rolex on your wrist and your freshly dry cleaned suit, you don’t need to drop R600 on a bottle, especially when we are yet to have some history. What really counts is that you treat your date like a million bucks, and have a heart of gold.
Don’t forget to enjoy yourself – lessons from the Princess and Prince
As much as dates are about the other person, they are also about you. So don’t forget to check in with yourself. Did you feel special? Highly valued? Like the most prized vintage in the room? Remember the world is full of varieties… so if this date didn’t tantalise your tastebuds, there’s bound to be someone else who will make the bitter moments all the more sweet.