A party host spends a great deal of time and money preparing for a get-together, so bringing a bottle of wine is a small way to show your appreciation of her efforts. Wine is an appropriate gift for any type of party, whether it is an intimate, formal dinner party or a huge, casual summer barbecue. A bottle by itself is a sufficient gift for an acquaintance or casual friend. If the host is a close friend or family member, dress the gift up by adding a corkscrew or a package of wine-glass charms.
Items you will need
- Bottle of wine
- Wine bag
- Gift tag
Call the host ahead of time if the party is a sit-down dinner. Explain that you would like to contribute a bottle of wine, and that you would like to choose something that will complement the meal. The general rule is to serve white wine with fish and red wine with meat. If you are attending a larger party where many appetizers will be served, this step is not necessary.
Buy a bottle of wine. If the host was not sure what the main course would be when you called, choose a type of wine that is widely liked. "Food & Wine" magazine suggests giving a bottle of Pinot Noir or sparkling wine. If you have a good wine shop in your area, the experts there can help you choose a bottle that is both tasty and budget-friendly. There is no definitive rule about what to spend on a hostess gift, but anything in the $15 to $25 range is appropriate.
Chill bottles of sparkling, white, pink or dessert wines. Keep the wine chilled until just before you leave for the party so it will be ready to serve. Red wines are generally served at room temperature.
Place the bottle in a gift bag made especially for wine. If you don't have a bag on hand, tie a ribbon around the neck of the bottle to dress it up. Attach a gift label. That way, if the host receives several bottles of wine, she will know who brought each one.
Hand the bottle to the host when you arrive at the party. Tell him what type of wine is inside so he does not have to open the gift in front of other guests. Let him know that he can either open the bottle immediately to share with the other guests or save it to enjoy later.
Tips & Warnings
- If you don't have time to get to the store, you may re-gift a bottle of wine you already own. Brush off any dust, and make sure the cork is not rising out of the bottle neck. This is a sign that the wine has gone bad.
- Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images