Presenting wine at a special meal can be tricky. Do you keep the bottles or decanters on a sideboard or plunk them down between the rolls and the potatoes? And what if the bottle is being passed and gets stuck in the inevitable logjam down by Uncle Larry? Wine coasters started appearing about 250 years ago, presumably to protect tablecloths from the inevitable drips of wine.
For the full article, check out the new issue of Wine Spectator, on newsstands November 15, 2006.
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