If you want to truly enhance the experience of a glass wine and get the most out of the layers that wine has to offer, it pays to invest in high-quality glassware.
There are wine glasses available that have been specifically designed to enhance the taste of the particular varietal, controlling the experience to produce the optimum flavour. Even if you don’t know much about wine or the wine terms to use, you’ll definitely be able to taste the difference when the same wine is poured into two differently shaped glasses.
You can test it for yourself. Take one bottle and two different glasses. See if you can identify any differences in the taste, nose and mouth feel.
You probably have a selection of three glasses in your cupboard: one set for each of white, red and sparkling. But what you might not be aware of is there are different types of glasses designed that are grape-varietal specific. For example, you can purchase one set of glasses for Pinot Noir, and another for Shiraz, and each would produce a different aroma, bouquet and taste.
Below is a list of the different types of glasses available, depending on your personal drinking preferences.
If you enjoy red
Red wine typically prefers a glass with a larger bowl; one that distances the strong aromas of the wine from your nose, giving it time to aerate on the way up.
The wider opening means that the mouthfeel of the drink will be a whole lot smoother, as the tannins will have a greater opportunity to evaporate.
Red wine glasses are also available for the particular style of red including a glass for medium to full bodied reds such as a Cabernet Sauvignon, full bodied reds like Shiraz and a glass for lighter styles such as Pinot Noir.
This is a nifty chart from the team at Wine Folly.
If you’re more of a white wine drinker, you should tend towards a smaller bowled glass that will preserve the floral aromas of the wine.
The smaller bowl also allows the wine to maintain its cooler temperature, further enhancing your enjoyment.
If you enjoy sparkling
Perhaps the most widely known type of glass designed for drinking sparkling wine or Champagne, is the flute. The height of the glass, combined with its narrower bowl, help the bubbles preserve for longer.
Again if you want to be very particular, depending on the type of sparkling or champagne you are drinking, different shaped flutes are available. The wider the bowl, the more aromas you will experience.
General tips for all wine drinkers
What’s most important to remember is that to enjoy wine on a day to day basis, you’re not required to purchase a whole new set of glasses for each varietal you enjoy. You can still fall in love with a wine without the fancy equipment; the correct wine glass simply highlights your favourite style.