Miss Manners by Judith Martin, Nicholas Ivor Martin and Jacobina Martin

Wine Snobs Don’t Want to Share

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My husband and I like unusual, hard-to-find wines. Frequently, dinner events have wine as part of the dinner, but you can also buy more interesting wines from the hotel or restaurant. Often the hotel gives you your bottle during the cocktail hour.

At the event, people we don’t know hold out a glass and say, “I’ll have a glass of that.”

I explain that we bought it separately to have with dinner, and usually that takes care of it. Or we tell them that waiters are passing wines, but they say, “Yes, but not THAT.”

My husband finally told one pushy woman that the bottle was $140, and he’d sell it to her for that. She yelled, “I just want a GLASS!”

We’ve gone to informal BYOB dinners with two bottles, knowing that we’ll do well to keep one bottle for ourselves. How do we best deal with Malbec moochers without appearing antisocial?

GENTLE READER: While Miss Manners does not condone the behavior of the person demanding a glass of whatever you were drinking, sharing is still central to social intercourse. The solution to your problem is to separate your two, incompatible activities: Go out on even-numbered days, and enjoy your unusual wines at home on odd days.