Wine glasses : the differences you need to know

There’s no wrong way to enjoy wine. Outdoors on a sunny day, or comfy in a warm living room. Everyone can appreciate wine, at all times. Having said that, it’s true you can enhance your experience in several ways. The right serving temperature; the food you serve; and today’s lesson: the wine glasses you use can help you experience wine at its best.

The wine glass market is vast and varied, but not all wine glasses are created equal. Here are the most common differences you need to know.

Wine glasses : Glass or crystal

Glass and crystal wine glasses

Most wine glasses are made either with glass or crystal. Glass is made by melting sand (it’s actually more complicated than that), and it’s pure. Crystal is glass with added minerals, specifically, lead. Cristal is more resistant than glass so, you can make quite strong, thin wine glasses with it. A wineglass made of glass is sturdier and less refined.

The feel of crystal is evidently more elegant than the hefty glass, but they are to be nursed. Crystal needs to be hand washed and managed carefully. Regular glass is for you if you’re not into handling delicate stuff (or have kids).

Stemmed or stemless

Stemless wine glasses

Stemless glasses have been on retail for a while now and made the act of enjoying wine less stuffy. There’s no serious contrast between the tall, graceful, stemmed glassware and their stemless counterparts. Though, consider your wine can warm up quicker if you hold it on your palm instead of carrying it by the thin stem below.

Large or small bowls

The shape of the bowl is the most crucial thing to consider when selecting a vessel for a specific style of wine. Just remember big bowls can hold richer, bolder wines, while small bowls are suitable for neutral, simple-is-beautiful type of wines. That’s why white wine glasses have smaller bowls than red wine glasses. A bold oaked Chardonnay will be charming in a large bowl while a piercing Sauv Blanc will open nicely in a narrow one.

Cheap or Fancy

Fancy wine glasses

Glassware made of pure glass is cheaper than crystal, and big brands like Riedel, Zalto or Spiegelau will charge a premium for their top of the line stemware. Don’t be too cheap; don’t exaggerate. Build a nice collection of glasses at home for every occasion, but focus on what’s most important, the people you’re toasting with.


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