With all the controversy going on about wine scams and Hector's $200 bottle of wine I thought I'd bring up my own wine rant.
I have yet to have a bottle of wine properly presented to me in NYC. Meaning, the waiter should keep the label facing the table at all times, never turn the bottle, never set it on the table. Essentially the hand holding the wine should not change position during the whole presenting/opening process. The other hand does all the work. The mouth of the bottle should be wiped twice with a clean cloth - once after the foil or wax is removed and once after the cork has been removed. The waiter should clearly read the vintage, vineyard, variety and of course, give a taste to the person who ordered the wine.
This tradition got started back in the day when if you didn't keep a keen eye on the wine it may have been switched from something else. Sounds like this is still going on today! (The wiping was to prevent mold from getting into the wine - something that's not really an issue now.)
I'm from cowtown Denver and if several of the fine dining restaurants there can manage to do it (granted there are only about 15 of them), then how come no one here can? Even places like Bouley Bakery and Gramercy Tavern didn't get it right.
Wine is an expensive and special part of a nice meal. Obviously with all the problems lately restaurants should give more importance to proper wine presentation. And diners should expect them to.