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The wine glass

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The wine glass is the final tool used (besides the human senses) in wine consumption and appreciation. Of course the most important factor is that the glass must be clean so as to serve as an inert recipient for the wine. Any good glass or crystal stemware will serve the purpose just fine. However, a glass which has been constructed with special care for a specific wine or grape variety can further elevate the wine tasting experience. Though a poor or faulty wine cannot be masked with a high quality glass, a good or great wine can be accentuated, highlighted, with its finest character trails emphasized by drinking it from a superior glass. It is now common to find basic ‘red’ and ‘white’ wine glasses. Typically the red wine glasses have a much more voluptuous bowl allowing for greater air to wine surface area, bringing out the red wine’s characteristics. White wine glasses tend to be slimmer with less of a bulging bowl. Mirroring the custom with food serving size, American glassware is much larger than typical European glassware. Some specialty glassmakers have created an elite reputation based on their varietal glasses and different glass ‘series’. It was discovered that shape and potential volume of glass, the radius of its rim, and the thickness of the crystal are key factors determining how the wine’s aroma reaches the nose and where the wine flows over the various taste zones of the tongue.

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