Five Questions to Ask Your Sommelier:
1. I recently tried [fill in the blank] and loved it. Do you have anything like it?
Mentioning a specific wine (the 2012 Domaine Drouhin) or even a broad category (Oregon Pinot Noir) is far more useful than giving a descriptor. You and your sommelier might have very different ideas about what “smooth” means, for instance.
2. I’ve been curious about [fill in the blank]. What bottle should I try?
Whether you’re new to Loire Valley Chenin Blanc or baffled by Bordeaux, this question lets your somm know you want something you’ve never had before and are looking for a relatively accessible introduction.
3. Can you point me to your favorite bottle under [name your price]?
Sommeliers don’t go around drinking expensive, rare bottles in their real lives; they always look for a deal. If the somm has recently been floored by a great value, this is your chance to get an insider’s tip.