It occurred to me that a better way to select wine might exist. Could save money. But let me digress a bit.
Years and years ago, I was still drinking, I worked for a sign shop. Briefly. I cut out letters from various colored plastics as a large part of my duty. The foreman measured my efforts and progress by the MPH.
“That’s a pretty good 55 MPH sign.”, he’d say, meaning that if one drove past it at 55 it would look OK. Any slower and there could be problems. Over time I worked my way down to 35 MPH signs.
Now, about wine. Let’s say that dinner is about 5:00 PM. Forget about bringing any wine for before dinner. Simply as a matter of discussion people will want to critique it. Leave that to the hosts.
Let’s say dinner lasts until 6:00. People will be full, partly inebriated, and now is the time to target your wine.
A wine to be served right after dinner should be OK. Doesn’t have to be anything special. A wine to be served after 7:00 can be any old rotgut in a fancy bottle. No one will notice a damned thing. And if people are still there and drinking after 8:00, they should be presented with what’s left in a carton and sent on their way. They will be grateful.
In other words, make sure yours is an “after dinner” wine and you can get away with cheap rotgut. Anything served before dinner is likely to become a topic of the conversation, will be consumed while folks have some discernment available to them, and is liable to be judged harshly. After dinner no one will notice.