If you have never been to a wine tasting room, you can feel more secure and enjoy the experience more by understanding the etiquette that governs most wine tasting rooms.
#1 Avoid Wearing Fragrances
Wine tasting is a really sensory experience that depends upon sense of taste and smell. Wearing strong fragrances can interfere with your wine tasting experience and with the other people in the tasting room with you. Your fragrance may not smell that strong to you, but it may be to others in the room, so be courteous and avoid wearing any fragrances when you go wine tasting.
#2 Smell First, Taste Second
When you sample the wine, you should smell the wine first. Tasting wine is an entire sensory experience. Smell the wine and see what different smells you can identify.
Then, taste the wine by swirling it around in your mouth before you taste it. Remember, you don't have to drink the entire sample if you don't want to or don't enjoy it; the whole point is to get a taste and an idea of each wine.
#3 You Can Spit Out The Wine
Third, you don't have to drink all the wine. If you are trying to control your wine intake or you don't enjoy the taste of a wine, you can spit it out. Wine tasting rooms have special containers called "spittoons" that are designed specifically for you to spit your wine into. You can also dump the remainder of a wine sample into the same container if you don't want to drink the rest of it.
This is normal behavior in a tasting room and no one will look at you weirdly if you spit out or dump your wine samples.
#4 You Can Order Glasses
Generally, in most tasting rooms, if you find a type of wine that you enjoy, you can order a glass of that wine to enjoy. Some wine tasting rooms also allow you to order cheese plates and other appetizer style food, so you can enjoy some food and a glass of your favorite wine.
#5 You Don't Have To Buy
You don't have to buy anything. Generally, you pay a tasting fee, which covers the cost of wine that you sample. Tasting rooms understand that many guests may be traveling and can't take wine with them or may not want to purchase wine at that moment.
However, you should be aware that when you purchase wine directly from a wine tasting room, you may get a discount on the wine that you will not get when you purchase the same wine in a grocery or wine store.