What should I do with this wine?

This is more an ettiquette question than a serving one. At the big birthday/housewarming party I threw for myself in May, a casual friend brought me a bottle of wine that she had carried back over personally from her recent trip to France. She cautioned me that I would want to save it until after the party as it was good wine and so I didn’t open it right away.

The thing is, I don’t drink wine and I’m not going to start as I don’t like it. I don’t even have any idea what sort of wine this is. But I feel bad that here’s this supposedly great wine hand-carried from France just sitting in the fridge. I don’t think my friend brought it over from France with me in mind; I think she didn’t have a gift and felt compelled to bring something (although I tried to make it clear that I wasn’t expecting anything from anyone). Would it be terribly gauche to give the wine back to her since I think she would appreciate it much more? It’s tough to bring it to another party as she is usually attending as well and I don’t want to seem unappreciative. Opinions?

Regift it to someone privately – and ideally outside of your shared circle – but don’t return or offer to return it to her.

Invite her over and serve it to her.

You’d better send it to me right away. I won’t tell your friend you gave it away.

Seriously, I’d regift it sometime, or just save it until you can bring it to a party where she’s not around.

Out of curiosity, what kind of wine is it exactly? I want to know if I need to meet your friend and make her bring ME wine instead of you :smiley:

to Expand on Ghanima’s idea, invite her and a small group of friends over for a dinner party, and serve the bottle of wine. Tell her you want to enjoy the wine with her. You can casually sip on a small glass of it, while the others in attendance quickly polish it off. She will be flattered that you thought of sharing it with her, and will think you were grateful for the gift, even though you only had a few ounces (or milliliters) of it.

Well, that’s kinda another sorta sticky point. She and I used to be better friends but we wound up sharing a six hour car ride and get kinda sick of each other. So we don’t really hang out now (another reason I feel guilty about the wine). Although it’s a great suggestion otherwise. Hmmmm, sounds like regifting is a good solution. Can you ship wine? My mom might like it.

I see, again, why dopers often complain about discomfort in social settings. With ideas like giving it back and re-gifting it, it is a small wonder. :wink:

It really doesn’t take much to make someone feel appreciated. It isn’t so hard at all. Lesse… you could invite the friend over for a glass of wine (suggested above); invite some other friend over who you know appreciates wine and then report back to the gift giving friend how much you enjoyed it; use it to toast at a special occasion, mention the friend if present, and report back if not, on how you used the wine for a special occasion…

Really. Or just sent it to me.

Trade it in! I’ll drive up from Houston with a bottle of your preferred tipple and do a f2f exchange! Then you can truthfully tell your friend, “That bottle of wine brought me great happiness.” :smiley:

I’m really not that socially inept, I swear. It’s just that with the story of the wine having been hand carried from France, our subsequent relationship cooling, and my dislike of wine, I felt guilty. If it had been an ordinary bottle, I’d give it away, no prob. If I liked wine, I’d drink in the spirit in which it was given. Argh, this is why I tried to make it clear (in a Miss Manners approved way) that I didn’t expect anything. Presents usually just make me feel bad and guilty.

Don’t do what I did. An acquaintance traveled to Europe. When she returned, she brought a bird in for me to examine and she gave me a bottle of French champagne and told me how much she enjoyed it while in France. I drank it and liked it mighty fine.

The next time I was in a liquor store, I asked about it and bought a bottle.

When next I saw her, I told her I loved the champagne so much that I bought it again. That statement ruined her day. She brought my bottle back from France, mistakingly believing that it could not be purchased here.

I’m with Ghanima…also, maybe she’s trying to warm up your relationship again, and was thinking of you when she got it in France. But then again, friends usually know what items turn each other on/off. Did she know of your dislike for wine? If she truly didn’t know, then this was a very meaningful gesture of friendship, therefore, keep the wine for something special…don’t give it away.

If she did give the wine to you KNOWING your dislike for it, then give it away…that was an unkind gesture…But I will KINDLY accept it from a lovely doper such as yourself. :wink:

You understand that they really shouldn’t, don’t you?

You should be able to Google the label info quite easily and find out how truly precious the stuff really is (last time I did this I found I’d just consumed a $600 bottle. Oops). The fact that she didn’t even know you disliked wine… well, it should lessen your guilt when you re-gift the thing. Or, as others suggested, have over some friends who do enjoy the stuff for wine and cheese. Then send a polite than you note saying they all loved it. The end.

Yeah, but an intellectual understanding and a kneejerk emotional reaction can occur simultaneously. I just feel bad if I don’t appreciate the present as much as the giver wants me to.

Nah, the cooling off happened after the gift of the wine. Like I said before, I don’t think she got the wine specifically for me; it was just a convenient gift and even before we started getting on each other’s nerves, we were only casual friends. The thing is, I kinda got the impression she wanted to be better friends that we were so I was afraid she gave me something that was too valuable. Hmmm, rereading this, I think I’m reading way too much into this. :dubious:

Gosh, that seems like an awful long way to drive to deliver a six pack of Shiner. :wink:

Spoken like a true Texan. :smiley:

And I’d bring you a whole case. Only fair.

My curiosity is really piqued. tremorviolet, will you post the label info?

Sure, I’ll look at when I get home. It’ll probably wind up being something completely obscure…

Ok, here’s the label info on the wine:
Front label: Le secret de Frere Nonenque, Abbaye de Valmagne, Mis en bouteille a la propriete

Back label: En 1575, frere Nonenque etait le cellerier de l’Abbaye de Valmagne et veillait donc sur les vignes et le vin produit sur place.
Cet assemblage de Voignier, Marsanne donne un vin vif aux aromes exuberants de peches et d’abricots.

Il accompagnera les viandes blanches, les from ages de chevre, et en general les repas legers.

Delicieux a deguster en aperitif a 12^C.



Mis en bouteille a la propriete par Abbaye de Valmagne producteur a 34560 VILLEVEYRAC.

I didn’t type out the little accent marks, etc.

I’m guessing it’s botled by monks 'cause there’s a picture of one on the front and the back is talking about the history and the serving temperature.

Seems you’ve got yourself a five Euro bottle of wine, not that that makes it any less special. It does seem to be made by monks so I’m sure your friend enjoyed wine tasting, visiting the Abbey and all that.

It’ll be from near Montpellier, in the Languedoc in the South of France. I don’t recognise the vineyard. The Languedoc region is producing increasingly interesting wines, and this could very well be very pleasant, but as Cat Fight says, it’s not a Romanée Conti.