Red Wine Glasses

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Red wine vs. White wine glasses: is the fuss really worth it?

Tall flute, bowl-shaped glass, or even straight from the bottle – many people simply do not care about the presentation. Now some people may know that different types of wine glasses exist and maybe even a little further knowledge on how they are used.

But is there a difference in drinking red wine from a red wine glass and a white wine glass?

According to wine connoisseurs,  the answer is yes. Although there may be other factors that differentiate how the wine tastes, including the composition of the glass and how it is poured into it, the shape of the wine glass has the most significant impact on how the wine tastes.

Red wine glasses have the following characteristics in common:

  1. Large size
  2. Wide openings
  3. Full, round bowl
  4. Short stem

The large opening enables one to identify aromas in the wine because it has enough room to dip the nose. The full bowl allows air to mix with the wine, increasing the oxidation rate of the wine, bringing our complex scents and flavors.

Some also argue that its tapered mouth allows the wine to sit in the right places within the mouth, providing the best flavors. The stem may or may not be present since red wine is served at room temperature and is mostly unaffected by the heat of the hands.

Examples of red wine glasses include:

  1. Cabernet: because of their full bowl and narrow mouth shape, they are made to amplify the aromas in the wine.
  2. Bordeaux glasses: these are the tallest of the red wine glasses and are perfect for full-bodied wines.
  3. Burgundy glasses: these are made to accommodate the more delicate aromas of the wines plus delivering a great taste to the mouth thanks to its shape.
  4. Pinot noir glasses: these glasses have the widest bowls and are great for intensifying the aromas of the wine since they have the biggest room for air.

Round bowls, large glasses, and big openings are more suited for white wine glasses. Here are the different kinds of red wine glasses:

  • Burgundy Wine Glass: Delicate red wines like Dolcetto, Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, and red Burgundy come under this category. These require large bowls so that the smell of the delicate wines can be consumed by the drinker.
  • Bordeaux Glass: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Petite Sirah should be consumed with this glass. These are the tallest red wine glasses with broad bowls that reduce the bitterness of the wine and amplify its flavor.
  • Standard Red Wine Glasses: When it comes to medium or full-bodied red wines such as Merlot, Shiraz, and Malbec, glasses with small openings serve as the best option. As the taste of the wine comes to your tongue in a gradual flow, the spiciness of the wine is softened.

What’s the difference between a red wine glass and a white wine glass?

In contrast to the full bowl shape of a red wine glass, white wine glasses are typically upright and have a smaller bowl. Their stems are also longer than those of their red wine counterparts.

White wine is best served chilled; hence it tends to have a longer stem to distance the drink and the warmth of the hand. The aromas are also not as rich as that in red wine; hence there is no need for aeration and a bigger bowl.

Why is it worth having different glasses based on the type of wine?

For quite some time, the debate has only been literal with little scientific backing to any argument. However, a Japanese firm recently conducted a study that showed how the shape of the glass affects the wine-drinking experience. Their experiment showed that different aromas from the wine left the glass in different ways, ultimately affecting how they are smelled. This is especially important for red wine since they have the richest aromas, which can only be experienced fully from a red wine glass.

What are the benefits of using a red wine glass?

According to Wine Folly, the round shape of red wine glasses together with the broader openings helps to weaken the bitter tannin or other spicy flavors, making the wine taste smoother.

Besides, the wider bowl allows aromas to sit on top of the glass. Provided the glass is not filled to the brim, the experience of the aromas plus the wine itself should be worth the trial.

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