The Perfect: At-Home Wine Tasting

By Leah Melby Clinton

1 The Wine

Plan on stocking one bottle per guest. "If you do a comparative tasting, usually the best for learning, choose one grape," Ford advised. "Tasting the same grape from different regions of the world is how you learn just how different regions can be." Areas to consider: Swartland, South Africa; Marche, Italy; and Costers del Segre and the Canary Islands in Spain.

Clockwise from top L: Ciu Ciu Merlettaie, ciuciuvini.it; Raimat Rosé, aveniubrands.com; Terre Brulee Chenin Blanc, capeclassics.com; Dafnios Vidiano, cretanwines.gr

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2 The Glasses

Make clean-up easier (and stymie the possibility of favorite glasses being broken) by stocking up on elegant plastic.

L'entramise Sleek Wine Glass, $1 each; lentramise.com

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3 The Wine Stopper

Because the aim of a tasting is never to finish every bottle you crack, have a designer stopper on hand.

Kelly Wearstler, $295; saks.com

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4 The Dress

As the hostess welcoming people into your space, your look should strike the right mix of comfortable and polished. A strong silhouette in right-now gingham does the trick.

Storets Off-the-Shoulder Dress, $92; storets.com

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5 The Small Plates

No matter your snack menu, having a chic place to stack it all is a necessity.

Ten Strawberry Street Metallic Dipped Plates, $20 for 4; tjmaxx.com

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6 The Hair Clip

Keep stray strands out of your eyes in order to really focus on the vino at hand.

Elizabeth and James Hair Pin, $150; shopbop.com

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7 The Notes

Give guests a spot to scribble notes and personal likes and dislikes.

Hester & Cook Tasting Papers, $16; hesterandcook.com

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8 The Tray

Save time and look good ferrying things from kitchen to couch with a cheerful Lucite tray.

Parker Thatch Lucite Tray, $168; parkerthatch.com

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