Discover the various types of wine glasses: How to choose the perfect one for every type of wine

Learn about the different types of wine glasses and enhance your tasting experience

By Elaina Borer
Apr 06, 2020

Discover the different types of wine glasses and enhance your wine tasting experience


What are wine glasses?

Wine glasses are specific glasses designed for use with wine. There are different types of wine glasses, each designed to highlight the aromas and flavors of a particular type of wine. Some of the most common types of wine glasses are:

White wine glass: usually have a longer stem and a narrower bowl than red wine glasses, to keep the wine cool and to concentrate the aromas.

  • Red wine glass: have a wider bowl than white wine glasses, to allow for greater exposure of the wine to air and easier perception of the aromas.
  • Dessert wine glass: usually have a smaller bowl than other glasses, as dessert wine is usually served in small quantities.
  • Champagne/Sparkling wine glass: have a tulip-shaped design to retain the bubbles and concentrate the aromas of the effervescent wine.
  • Port or Sherry wine glass: have a funnel-shaped design to concentrate the aromas of these types of fortified wines.
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Why are glasses important?

It's a great starting question! The glass is important in terms of glass quality, size, shape, and more. The answer to this fundamental question is that glasses can influence the taste of your wine, and the same wine can have a different taste (in a surprisingly manner) if poured into different glasses. Amazing but true (I have tried it myself).

The logic behind this is that aromas are released and developed based on the amount of oxidation that the wine experiences, that is, how much the wine comes into contact with the air that hits its surface.

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Does the shape of the glass affect the taste?

The debate is whether the glass delivers the wine to certain "zones" of the tongue, and whether the tongue has taste receptors in specific places.


And is the oral part of taste as important as the smell-taste factor?

It should be noted that sensory taste is not only oral but also based on smell. A classic "map" of the human tongue shows taste receptors clearly divided into parts: bitter at the base, acid at the base, salty at the forefront, sweet at the forefront, and umami everywhere. The problem with this map is that it has been shown to be an incomplete theory! A problem of wrong translation, the map was a legitimate research document written by a German scientist dating back to the early 1900s - it has been proven for some time that it is not correct.


Even more importantly, taste receptors are present throughout the tongue, so in the event that you burn a part of the tongue, for example because the soup is too hot, be sure to still be able to enjoy flavors and sensations thanks to different areas on the whole tongue. The most important thing is that your sensory tastes are linked to your sense of smell. Therefore, to truly taste and smell distinct aromas, the best solution is to unite our senses, as in the tasting and sampling of foods and wines. If you try to hold your nose while tasting a piece of apple or a glass of wine, you can notice the difference in the sensory experience.

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What to look out for when buying wine glasses?

In general, when buying new wine glasses, you should look for the quality of the glass, the size and shape, so that they are suitable for the type of wine you want to drink. Also, it's always a good idea to have a variety of glasses for different occasions and types of wine. And remember, the wine experience is all about the senses, so have fun experimenting with different types of wine glasses to discover how they influence the taste and aroma of the wine.


Wine glasses: what are the good rules?

  • Remember to pay attention to the cleaning and care of glasses to keep them in perfect condition. 
  • Choosing the right glasses for wine is an art that requires basic knowledge and personal taste.
  • Experimenting with different types of glasses and wines will help you discover which ones best suit your palate and preferences.
  • Choosing the right glass can significantly influence the wine tasting experience.
  • Always have a variety of glasses for different occasions and types of wine.

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