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British wine consumers bluff at restaurants

Published:  23 July, 2008

British wine consumers are a nation of bluffers when it comes to ordering wine at restaurants.

A technique coined as "Second Cheapest Syndrome" pervades the approach most people in the UK take when perusing a restaurant's wine list, according to a Castello-commissioned study.

Just one third of respondents said they felt they knew the correct wine to order at restaurants while the remainder opted instead to choose the second cheapest wine on the list in order to try and look knowledgeable while not appearing thrifty.

More than half of those questioned said they felt stressed or confused while ordering wine at restaurants but despite this 56% of people are reluctant to ask a sommelier/waiter for recommendations in case they are sold expensive wines.

There were regional variations in the survey results with Londoners most likely to ignore the house wine while Yorkshire diners usually opt for the cheapest option available.