Most people are used to walking into a liquor store or the supermarket, picking up a bottle of wine, getting home and pouring it in a glass and if you’re like me on some days, you drink it straight from the bottle. In theory, it’s not an entirely wrong way to drink wine. But there are things you could stop doing to ensure you have a massive impact on the enjoyment of your wine experience.

1. Stop serving your wine while it’s very cold

Over-chilling white wine is a mistake that happens way too many times. Drinking white wine that’s too cold can dull its flavors, increase its acidity and mask the aromas.

To ensure the perfect temperature to serve your wine, follow the 20 minute rule. According to the 20 minute-rule, put reds in the fridge for 20 minutes prior to serving and remove whites from the fridge 20 minutes before serving.

2. Stop putting ice in your wine

This is a definite no-no. Adding ice to your wine dilutes it leaving it watery and leaves it tasting less like wine. So even while you’re at the club and you order for a glass of wine, don’t add ice to it if it feels warm to you. Instead ask your waiter or the bartender for it to be chilled for a short period of time.

3. Let your wine breathe

Giving your wine a certain amount of time to breathe will help stimulate the aromas and enhance the flavor of your drink. So next time, instead of drinking the wine immediately, let it breathe for a bit. It may sound pompous but you’ll get better flavors this way.

4. Hold your glass by the stem, not by the bowl

Most people think that holding the bowl – the middle part of the glass – makes them look sophisticated. At least I used to think that. The correct way to hold your glass is by the stem. This, I learnt, is mainly because our body temperature tends to affect the temperature of the wine. So instead of transferring your body heat to the wine, hold it by the stem.

5. Don’t fill the glass all the way to the top

This is a mistake I usually do especially for the long tough work days when I get home and all I want to do is drown myself in a full glass of wine. One should in fact leave a little space at the top for you to swirl the wine. The reason for the swirling is as important as letting it breathe.

However, don’t swirl unnecessarily. Certain wines are not meant to be swirled.

6. Expand you wine palette

We all have a favorite drink. One that even the guy from the supermarket knows you’ll pick because you always buy it every Friday. However, getting used to the same exact taste of wine isn’t a good idea. Give your tongue the chance to experience different palettes of taste. Explore and enjoy. There’s so much to choose from.

7. Make sure you store your wine properly

If you aren’t storing your wine in a cool dark place while lying down, then you’re doing it wrong. We’re used to seeing them being stored under bright lights in supermarkets and wine stores but storing them in a nice cool dark place makes the wine last longer