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Picking out the right wine doesn’t have to be rocket science, but it can be an art form. Although there are very few bad wines, anyone is at risk of making mistakes when choosing the right wine for the night. Even those in the 86.4% of adults who have tried alcohol at least once in their lifetime may regret their choice for the specific occasion. Peruse these common missteps that wine novices and wine lovers alike make when selecting wine and you’ll never end up with a bottle that’s not quite to your taste again.

Mistake 1: Forgetting about the food

Pairing wine with food is such a specialized skill that people study the art for years and take exams to become certified sommeliers. While you certainly aren’t expected to pair quite as perfectly as these trained professionals, knowing even the basics of pairing will help ensure you bring the right bottle to a dinner party. In general, white wine tends to go better with fish and chicken and red wines pair well with steaks and heavier meats. When all else fails, ask your host for the night’s menu and take your search to the internet to find the right bottle.

Mistake 2: Only picking the big names

As you search for cheap wine online, you’re probably looking to match the most affordable price with a well-known region. While regions like Bordeaux and Napa Valley have proven their worth in producing fine wines, there are plenty of other fantastic wine regions in the world. Oftentimes, these lesser-known regions will even have better quality wines than what the more famous regions offer in the lower price brackets.

Mistake 3: Judging a bottle by its cover

A pretty wine label doesn’t always guarantee that there will be a tasty wine inside. High-end wineries may have started the trend of matching their delicious wines with an attractive label, but more industrial wineries have now caught onto this strategy. With so many wineries now making more of an effort in their design, the bottle’s label is no longer a sure indicator of whether the wine will actually be good.

For anyone who wants to start their wine online shopping search, the best strategy is to read about the notes of flavor the wine offers. And when in doubt, check out the online wine shop resources at Wines ‘Til Sold Out to get the expert advice you need.