When it comes to choosing stemware (or stemless ware), not all types of wine glasses are the same. In fact, which kind you buy, set out on a table or bar, or use with dinner all depends on the kinds of wine you’ll be serving.
It may sound complicated, but it’s really not. In fact, you can easily invest in an universal stemless wine glass for easy entertaining and call it a day.
Or, you can invest in an essential wine glass type made for white and another for reds, and then call it a day. Frankly, I don’t think you can ever have too much stemware.
Three best wine glass types to own
When it comes to choosing the correct wine glass, it can get as tricky as choosing the right wine. With the abundance of options, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
However, I’ve helped you to narrow down the three types of best wine glasses to own. These will help you get through hosting a formal event or just having a casual wine tasting with friends.
Types of wine glasses based on shape
“So much of the wine-tasting experience comes from the wine’s aroma. Our brains use the aroma to help process the flavor, so we want a glass that brings out those nuanced smells. Universally, wine glasses have bigger bowls with a tapered side to help those aromas travel to our nose,” says expert Amanda McGrory-Dixon of Burrata and Bubbles. “You’ll notice red wine glasses have bigger bowls than white wine glasses. That bigger bowl better allows for more aeration, which helps accentuate those bolder aromas.”
The glass’ bowl shape and cup area affect how quickly wine oxidizes. That translates to how the wine reacts and changes as it’s exposed to the oxygen in the air.
Oxidation can influence the taste and even the color of the wine as it sits in the glass. That’s why the shape of the glass is so important.
In addition, the rim of the glass also contains and concentrates the aromatics of the wine, adding to the testing drinking experience as it’s sipped.
There are glasses for enjoying heavy-, medium-, and light-bodied wines, including both red and white wines. White wine glasses tend to be smaller than red wine glasses. But buying new stemware is unnecessary whenever you open a new bottle, if you know which types to invest in.
All-purpose stemless wine glass
When it comes to an all-purpose wine glass, you need one that can handle almost any type of wine. Well, any type except for sparkling wines. That’s fodder for another wine glass buying article.
Anyway, an all-purpose type of wine glass should be wide enough to help aerate red wine but not so big that sipping a white wine isn’t enjoyable. Luckily, there are more on the market now than ever and one that can serve multiple purposes. And that would be the stemless wine glass.
For example, a stemless wine glass is a great go-to, all-purpose glass. It can accommodate red and white wine with a wide bowl for oxygenation.
We own a set of stemless glasses, and they’ve become our work horses. We use them for everyday meals to hold soda or sparkling water.
And then we’ll bring them out again if we want to have a more formal dinner for the holidays. In addition, they work perfectly for pairing sangria with Mexican food.
White wine glass
White wines have a more delicate aroma and flavor. Therefore, they require a different glass than red wine.
A white wine type of glass has a narrower shape and a smaller opening at the top. This is because whites don’t need as much oxygen to breathe. Plus, the shape keeps the aromatics in the bowl as you sip and enjoy.
Choose a Chardonnay glass as the all-purpose white wine glass. It has a slightly larger bowl than other white wine glasses, but it’s versatile enough to serve them all well.
Finally, you can even find this Chardonnay-style glass in the stemless variety. These would be an excellent addition to a bridal or wedding registry.
Red wine glasses
Red wine glasses tend to be bigger and have larger bowls than white wine. This allows them to offer more oxygenation that helps to bring out the wine’s full flavor profile.
In addition, red wine glasses have larger openings at the top to help with aroma release. Also, they have longer stems for better temperature control.
Select a Bordeaux glass as an all-purpose red wine glass. It is larger than the chardonnay glass with a bigger bowl to allow for the aeration so you can enjoy their full flavor.
This article on National Wine Day includes red wine holidays.
Quality of your wine glass
When it comes to essential wine glasses, look for high-quality glasses. If you really want to invest in quality, buy crystal glasses to enjoy the feeling and experience while drinking.
Consider tempered glass or even high-quality plastic for the stemless, all-purpose wine glass for everyday glasses. It’s less likely to break as easily with normal wear and tear.
At the same time, you may want to expand upon your wine glass collection as you host more dinner parties and find yourself setting formal tables and serving guests. But these three all-purpose glasses are the best for anyone looking to be prepared for entertaining.
Tips for hosting a successful wine tasting
Now that you have the right types of wine glasses at home, you can invite people over for a bona fide wine tasting. Just make sure you stock your bar first.
Here are some tips for making your tasting a breeze.
Choose your wines wisely
Choose wines with unique flavor profiles so everyone can appreciate each glass’ characteristics. Try to plan around a theme, such as one type of wine or one wine-making region.
For example, there are tons of wineries in Michigan as there are in California, New York and Ohio.
Provide food pairings
A cheese board or charcuterie tray is perfect for enjoying the wine and keeping everyone satiated between tastings.
Building a charcuterie board is quick and easy. Or, you can find great charcuterie board options on Etsy.
On the other hand, you can keep it simple and pick up a cheese sampler at Costco.
Here are the name-brand companies that make Costco products.
Have fun with it
Be willing to try new bottles and taste new varieties. The key is not to take learning about wine too seriously and enjoy yourself while you discover what wines you like and the ones you don’t.
Finally, as you acquire wine, make sure you store it properly so the wine doesn’t expire before you can enjoy it.