Do Expensive Wine Glasses Make A Difference
The same wine can portray wildly different characteristics depending on what glass it is served in, so years of expertise by top brands such as Riedel have gone into crafting the optimum glass for each type of wine. When it comes to wine glasses therefore, classic is always best and it’s worth investing in the right glassware and a range of it.
There are dozens of variations to suit different wines. A white wine glass will always have a longer stem and narrower circumference to keep the wine cooler for longer, while big red wines need a wide glass to draw in lots of air and help the bouquet open up. You can find a wine glass that does both, as – according to The Wine Bible – ‘A well-designed, good wineglass whether it will eventually hold red or white wine should have a generous bowl. An ample bowl gives the wine’s aromas and flavours room in which to evolve. Closer to the rim, however, the bowl should narrow, forcing the aromas to be focused toward your nose.’ Stemless wine glasses may be trendy, but as explained in The Wine Bible: ‘Choose a glass with a steam, to give you something to hold other than the bowl. Holding the glass around the bowl can warm the wine.’
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Do Wine Glasses Really Make A Difference
For those with a developed palate, the short answer is: yes, wine glasses can really make a difference to your wine drinking experience. Specialty wine glass makers like Riedel work to ensure the glass to suit your chosen varietal enhances not only the taste of the wine youre drinking, but also the experience of drinking it.
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Zalto Denk’art Universal Glass
Every once in a while, hype gets warranted. These are really great glasses. You can feel it. You can see it. You can smell it. And I love that they approached the idea of a universal glass to behold in terms of quality and usability across the board. Ryan Ibsen, Wine Director of Bestia & Bavel in Los Angeles
The Best Special Occasion Wine Glasses
Leading on from sparkling wines , special occasion wine glasses are those you wish to bring out on celebratory occasions. . Heres where we recommend the quintessentially dressed-up coupe. Best held while wearing a dashing tuxedo or evening gown. These saucers are about as debonair as glasses come.
Our pick: Waterford Lismore Essence Champagne Saucer, $289.00
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Why You Should Trust Us
In our research for the 2019 update, we consulted wine importer and Hannah Harris, a manager and sommelier at the restaurant Pasquale Jones in New York City. In previous years, weve spoken with other wine professionals, including Eric Asimov, wine critic for The New York Times Scott Carney, master sommelier and dean of wine studies at The International Culinary Center in New York Michele Thomas, a sommelier and freelance wine and spirits writer and Kristin Wastell, then the visitor center manager at the Ravenswood Winery Tasting Room in Sonoma, California. Over the years, some of these experts have also helped us conduct our taste tests for this guide.
We also spoke to chemosensory specialists, such as Steven D. Munger, PhD, director at the Center of Taste and Smell at the University of Florida, and Terry Acree, PhD, a professor in the Department of Food Science at Cornell University. Additionally, we reached out to glass experts such as , chief scientist at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York, and William C. LaCourse, PhD, a professor in the Glass Engineering Department at Alfred University in Alfred, New York.
We also looked at several wine glass reviews from sources such as The New York Times , The Wall Street Journal, Wine Spectator, and Apartment Therapy. Finally, we scoured stores such as Williams Sonoma, Crate and Barrel, Macys, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Amazon.
The Best Wine Glasses At Every Price According To Sommeliers
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For any wine aficionado, finding the perfect glass can be as critical as the wine itself. There are myriad choices on the market, but its difficult to know which ones are truly the best. To ease the process, Vogue consulted 8 sommeliers to give us an inside look at their favorite wine glasses across a variety of price points. Theres one who has a high-profile role at Eleven Madison Park, a Meilleur Ouvrier de France Sommelier award winner, and a star from the 2013 documentary Somm.
Yet despite the sommeliers diverse backgrounds, achievements, and tastestheres one wine glass that tops everyone’s list: the Zalto DenkArt Universal Glass. This glass makes you feel like you are doing things right in life. It’s an ideal way to enjoy wine without the frivolity that comes with over-designed stemware. The thin lips allows for maximum wine intake, and the bowl is an ideal platform to enhance all types of wines. Also, much more durable than it looksI even run them in my dishwasher,” shares Victoria James, Sommelier at the Michelin-starred restaurant Cote.
Every once in a while, hype is warranted, Ryan Ibsen, Wine Director of Bestia and Bavel in Los Angeles, says of the Zalto glass. “You can feel it. You can see it. You can smell it.”
Before you break open your next bottle of wine, shop our guide for the best sommelier-approved wine glasses, below.
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Best Overall: Riedel Vinum Viognier/chardonnay Glasses
Courtesy of Liquor.com
Expressive, low-acid wines thrive in Riedels 12.38-ounce crystal VINUM Viognier/Chardonnay glasses. This particular collection was first launched in 1986, but the glassware company has been around since the mid-18th century and is credited with pioneering varietal-specific stemware. The mouth of this particular glass is not too narrow, designed to direct the flow of liquid to the desired area of the palate for optimized tasting based on its designated wine style. The VINUM lines Viognier and Chardonnay glasses also work well for Chenin Blanc, Pinot Grigio/Gris/Blanc, and more. Theyre also dishwasher-safe for your convenience.
Generally speaking, its smart to keep glassware specific to medium and fuller-bodied white wines as they can easily stand in as light-bodied red wine glasses, making them ideal for transitioning through a coursed meal.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats
Tanisha Townsend holds the WSET Level 3 Certification and is a Certified Specialist of Wine and Certified Specialist of Spirits through the Society of Wine Educators. She has been teaching people how to swirl and sniff wine in glasses for over a decade. In doing so, shes learned the best glasses for each wine to enhance flavorand look good while doing it. But more importantly, she can wash a wine glass without breaking it.
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Best Value: Libbey Vineyard Reserve Wine Glass Set
If you’re looking for the most budget-friendly option, order this set of 12 wine glasses from Libbey, a brand that Isle describes as a “major producer of restaurant glassware.” It comes with six glasses that work for various white wines and six glasses designed for various reds. At less than $4 each, this affordable wine glass set is an incredibly great value, whether for stocking your first apartment or hosting a wine-tasting party. “They are inexpensive, but don’t have a cheap appearance,” said a shopper.
To buy: $40 for 12
The Verdict: Best Wine Glasses
A good glass isnt just useful for a good wine, its essential. The Waterford elegance glass catered really well for cabernet sauvignon and similar-bodied red wines, while the Schott Zwiesel sauvignon blanc glass enhanced the appreciation of this classic white.
The set of Riedel Winewings wine tasting glasses provided the ultimate tasting kit for anyone with more than a passing interest in different wine styles, while the Epoque Champagne flute added a touch of Venetian style to Champagne or sparkling wine.
But it is the versatile, stylish and durable Richard Brendon x Jancis Robinson glass that we think provides the perfect glass for any occasion and any wine. Cheers to that.
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How To Choose A Wine Glass Style
Pour your favorite reds, whites and rosés into stylish wine glasses from Crate and Barrel. From entertaining guests to simply relaxing at the end of the day, our stemware makes a chic presentation for a great glass of wine. We offer wine glasses for all wine types to bring out the distinct flavors and aromas of cabernets, champagnes and other favorites. For more casual serving, try our modern stemless wine glasses. These contemporary glasses are a relaxed alternative to traditional styles. You can choose from stemware in sets, or opt for single glasses to create your own collection. Learn more about the glass styles we offer.
How Best To Store A Wine Glass
I store all my glasses in a cabinet away from the kitchen, says Wilson. You do not want the aromas from cooking to come near the glasses. Also, the right amount of humidity is important, thats why storing them in a wine cellar isnt the right spot.
When it comes to how to store, Guthrie continues, Thin rimmed, crystal glasses should be stored bowl up to avoid chips and breaks, however, you can store thicker rimmed glassware with the bowl downward.
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Best Insulated: Host Cooling Cups
These top-rated insulated tumblers are the plastic wine glasses you never knew you needed. Before use, just place them upside down in the freezer for white and rosé wine , and the cooling gel lining will perfectly chill your drink. Shoppers call the glasses a “game-changer” because they no longer have to dilute their wine with ice cubes to keep it cold. “I tend to drink my wine a little slow. Before I finish it, my chilled wine is room temperature,” one person wrote. “These cups are perfect. Even after an hour inside the house, the wine is still refreshing.”
To buy: $23 for two
The Difference Between Crystal Non
When purchasing wine glasses, its helpful to understand some basic termsincluding crystal, non-leaded crystal, and soda-lime glassto ensure you know what youre buying.
Soda-lime glass is primarily made from about 60 to 75 percent silica , 12 to 18 percent soda ash , and 5 to 12 percent lime , according to the Corning Museum of Glass online dictionary. Since its so versatile and inexpensive to produce, this type of glass is commonly used for everything from drinking glasses to pickle jars.
Non-leaded crystal, not to be confused with quartz crystal, is a type of lead-free glass thats similar in appearance to leaded crystal . Its more refractivethat is, super-sparklythan soda-lime glass, and more expensive. Wine glass makers can also pull it thinner than soda-lime glass, which results in thin rims and flawless bowls and stems. While there are many formulas used to make non-leaded crystal, glass manufacturers commonly use additives such as barium. Jane Cook, chief scientist at CMOG, explains, Barium crystal is far less toxic, but its also harder than leaded crystal. Its not going to scratch as easily. Its going to look a little bit different, and its not going to have the same color profile. Keep in mind that non-leaded crystal can also be referred to as crystal, which is confusing, so we recommend contacting the manufacturer directly if youre uncertain, or if its not clearly labeled on the box.
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Best For White: Schott Zwiesel Fortissimo Full
Feels delicate in your hands
Taller than most glasses
Easy to tip over
The Fortissimo line of Schott Zwiesel wine glasses sets itself apart by having a longer stem but a wide base for stability. This design leads to the classy look this glass has when sitting on a table. The bowl is the perfect shape for white wine and can serve double duty as a water glass.
Same as other Schott Zwiesel glasses, these feature the Tritan crystal technology that lends them durability. A major selling point, and why we have two different styles on this list, is the titanium and zirconium in the crystal that make for a stronger glass.
Only one size glass available
Very thin glass
We recommend this set for people who prefer uniformity and matching sets at dinner parties but don’t want to break the bank. The large wine glasses from Hotel Collection come in a set of four, as do the flutes and stemless glasses. There is also a decanter available to complete the set. They are made from glass with a slightly flared bowl and a slender stem. And after that dinner party, you can put these glasses in the dishwasher.
Great set for a new collector
Great size bowl for white or red wines
Print on the glass may be too whimsical for some
Good for indoor and outdoor use
Not ideal for red wine
Not for formal occasions
Easy to hold in your hand
Not for formal occasions
Our Pick: Libbey Signature Kentfield Estate All
The best wine glass for everyday use is the Libbey Signature Kentfield Estate All-Purpose Wine Glass. We particularly recommend this inexpensive, 16-ounce tulip-shaped glass if you mostly drink bottles of wine in the $20 or less range, enjoy entertaining, or simply want a set of stemware that doesnt cost a fortune. The Libbey was a favorite of our experts and non-experts alike, showcased the aromas of both reds and whites well, and has a classic look thats appropriate for daily use or formal occasions. Its nicely balanced and durable, with a thin lip that doesnt distract from enjoying the overall drinking experience. Its also dishwasher safe.
Our experts were better able to detect the subtle aromas of both red and white wines in the tulip-shaped Libbey than in many of the other glasses we tested. In our blind tasting, wine importer Mary Taylor noted that this shape holds the aromas in tighter, which made it better for a lightly oaked white wine than the large and stately Korin Sena Bordeaux glass, another inexpensive glass in our lineup.
While the Libbey glass is slightly thicker than fine crystal stemware, its still thin and elegant enough for dinner parties, which is great, especially if youre wary of giving an expensive glass to rowdy guests. Made from what Libbey calls its ClearFire formula for soda-lime glass, it does seem to sparkle more under the light than other soda-lime glass offerings in this price category.
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Best For Red: Schott Zwiesel Banquet Soft Red Wine Glasses Set Of 6
Some may prefer glass or crystal
These Schott Zwiesel red wine glasses have such an elegant and sophisticated look to them. The rounded bowl and slender stem just add to the sleek design. You can pull these out when you want to drink red wine with dinner on a regular weekday no need to wait for a fancy party or houseguests.
What gives the Zwiesel glassware line its durability is the Tritan crystal technology. This technology replaces the lead in the crystal with titanium and zirconium to make the glasses stronger and more durable.
Best Splurge: Zalto Denk’art Bordeaux Wine Glass
Iconic in the wine world
Thin lip and luxurious stem
Ask any professional, and theyll tell you that Zalto is somewhat of an icon in the world of wine, with the DenkArt line among its most widely beloved. This Austrian-brand was even one of the first to introduce hand-crafted and mouth-blown functional glasses to the market, according to Shira Tsiddon, sommelier at The Norman Hotel in Tel Aviv. The beauty of these 23-ounce style-specific glasses, she says, is the combination of elegant, clean lines, thoughtful design inspired by the Earths tilt angles, and its versatility to function in both a fine dining setting and in a cabinet at home.
One of the major superiorities about Zalto Denk’Art Wine Glasses lies in how light , says Tsiddon. When pouring the wine and holding the glass up, you cannot feel it exists the glass is nearly transparent, both visually and physically, she says. makes the wine taste even more majestic than it usually does. If youre looking for something that looks and feels luxurious, these Bordeaux glassesdesigned for rich, full-bodied redsare your best bet.
“These wine glasses may be pricey, but the thin lip, light weight and elegant stem of a Zalto glass show off a great wine to its best advantage.” Kathryn Maier, Editor
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The 9 Best Wine Glasses To Buy
One size does not fit all when it comes to wine, and there are good reasons why.
Digital Features Writer at House & Garden
When it comes to wine glasses, there is so much more to consider than simply the aesthetic. Wine glasses are too often considered as simply a vessel to convey a wine to its drinker, but they are an integral part of the whole experience and play a big factor in the taste, texture and aroma of a wine.