When you go for tastings at your favorite vineyard or eat dinner at the local wine bar, you’ll likely notice many different glasses for vino varietals. Seeing all of them can be overwhelming, and you may feel as though your own kitchen cabinets are lacking. However, there are only three glasses that you really need.
Let’s start with the basics: white wine versus red wine glasses. You’ll notice that glasses for whites have a more narrow bowl and a more narrow rim. You probably also know that white wines tend to be more delicate, and too much air can destroy them more quickly than a red can be tainted. Therefore, the narrower rim prevents too much air from getting into the glasses and negatively altering the taste of the wine.
On the other hand, glasses made for the red varietals tend to have a wider bowl, and the rim is more in proportion with the bowl than in a white designated glass. The wider bowl lets more oxygen into the wine, which thereby allows more flavors to be released. In addition to having more bold flavors in the mouth, the wine connoisseur will also be able to smell the flavors being released as the air works its magic. While white wine ones are intended to be held by the stem, red wine ones are intended to be held at the base of the bowl. This is why stemless glasses are generally reserved for the red varietals.
Now let us move on to the champagne flute. While the name does imply the type of beverage that these glasses generally contain, they are also appropriate for all the sparkling, bubbly whites. The narrowness of the glass helps to bring all of the bubbles into a small area to really heighten their effect. After all, aren’t the bubbles one of the most beloved parts of a soothing glass of sparkling white? With these three glasses, you can go straight from a crisp glass of white in the summer to a bold red at Thanksgiving to the first cheers of the New Year.
Clearly, using the appropriate wine glasses matters. It affects the taste, smell and general sense of character that the wine has. Check out some of our 90+ Point wines under $25 and taste the difference between the glasses with a couple friends!