Whether they’re for entertaining with friends or enjoying a relaxing drink over dinner, no household is complete without a quality set of wine glasses. But, with so many sizes, shapes and styles, choosing the right wine glass can be a little daunting.
To help you choose the best glasses for the styles of wine you’re drinking, we’ve put together this easy-to-follow guide. Tasting Panellist Nicole Gow, demystifies the glassware process using a great range of glasses from Schott Zwiesel.
WHITE WINE GLASSES
For an all-purpose white wine glass, choose a long stem with a good-sized bowl so there is plenty of space for the wine to breathe. Always hold the glass by the stem to ensure the bowl is not heated by your hands.
Typically, lighter-bodied white wines like Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc are best served in a glass with a smaller bowl. This helps to keep it cool and helps to concentrate and amplify the floral aromatics of these delicate styles.
For fuller-bodied whites like Chardonnay, go for a glass with a larger bowl to really bring out and enhance the creamy texture of the varietal.
RED WINE GLASSES
Overall, red wines are best served in larger-bowled glasses, and there are generally two red wine glass shapes – Bordeaux and Burgundy. The larger bowl of red wine glasses, allows you to not only get your nose in to smell the aromas, but it also brings more air into contact with the wine, releasing the flavours and softening the tannins.
The Bordeaux glass is great for an all-round, everyday red wine glass. The characteristic tall shape, open bowl and straight sides allow plenty of surface area for the wine to come into contact with the air, helping to tame the bold tannins of varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and South Australian Shiraz, while also unlocking the flavours of new world wines such as Tempranillo, Malbec and Sangiovese .
The Burgundy glass is perfect for more delicate styles of wine such as Pinot Noir, softer reds or more medium-bodied Australian Shiraz. While it’s often shorter than the Bordeaux glass, it has a larger bowl, tapering to a narrower opening. This shape allows the wine to hit the tip of your tongue where more delicate flavours can be appreciated and enjoyed.
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SPARKLING WINE GLASSES
For Sparkling wines, there are two types of glasses that enhance the wine in different ways. The familiar flute shape allows the bubbles to gather at the bottom of the glass then shoot up to the top, capturing the aromas and flavours and presenting a stunning display of sparkles.
Or if you’re enjoying a Sparkling wine with a bit of age or complexity, the tulip shaped glass still gives you bubbles, but also allows more air to hit the wine and really open up the aromas and flavours.
STEMLESS WINE GLASSES
For a great all-rounder that’s stylish, but also really durable, the stemless wine glass is a great choice. Just make sure that you don’t end up warming up the wine too much through the heat in your hands. The classic shape means it’s versatile and can also be used for water, juice, sodas or cocktails.
CHOOSING YOUR FIRST SET OF GLASSWARE
It’s a great idea to initially choose a small range of glasses based on the wine styles you love, and build your collection as you discover more wine varieties. A versatile larger white wine glass like the Schott Zwiesel Vina Bordeaux White is a great all around choice and is what the Wine Selector’s Tasting Panel use for their tasting sessions. Then you could look towards a dedicated Red Glass set with a Bordeaux shape or a Burgundy shape depending on which style of wine you prefer.
We highly recommend the fantastic range of Schott Zwiesel wine glasses. Combined with titanium, rather than lead, they are remarkably strong for such fine crystal glassware. They’re very durable and dishwasher safe, making them the perfect glass for everyday use, but also beautifully styled for your special occasions. Explore our full range now