Make The Right Stemware Selection For Your Wines | Signature Cellars
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Make The Right Stemware Selection For Your Wines

right stemware selection for your wines

08 May Make The Right Stemware Selection For Your Wines

Wine has and continues to be a fine and elegant drink. It needs to be stored in the right conditions, and you also need to pay special attention to aspects such as temperature, humidity, lighting and the right kind of wine racks. Just as you focus on storing your wine appropriately, special care needs to be taken while serving wines.

Every wine has a specific serving temperature, timing as well as food pairings. One of the other crucial aspects you need to keep in view while serving wine is to make the right stemware selection.

Why Using The Right Stemware Matters

The glass selection would be dependent on the type of wine as that would help to maximise the aroma and taste of the beverage. When it comes to guests and sommeliers who are experienced and educated in wine tasting, you would not want to serve wine in just any glass. You must consider investing in stemware that would justify the overall quality of your wines. The right wine glass selections would also reflect your knowledge about and love for wines.

The shape of the wine glass can dictate the flavour, taste and density of your wine. It is the glass that helps to manipulate the vaporising properties that define aromas which collect in the space left in the glass after pouring the liquid.

Classification Of Wines

Many experts study and evaluate wines down to the last detail, based on different metrics. However, while choosing stemware for your wines, here we are only looking at a very standard wine classification, that takes into consideration heaviness, colour, sweetness, bitterness and other physical properties of the wine. Understanding this classification is necessary while you are making your stemware selection. Let’s take a look at what these are:

1. White Wines

When you are serving white wines, you would generally use glasses that have narrower and smaller bowl sizes. This is primarily because most white wines are served chilled. The smaller bowls help to preserve a cooler temperature for a longer duration which helps to keep the acidic features and aromatic qualities of the wine intact. The smaller bowl opening prevents oxidation which helps to maintain the clean flavour of the white wine.

However, smaller bowl stemware is not a universal choice when it comes to white wine. For instance, if you are serving an oaked Chardonnay, which is a more full-bodied wine, using larger bowl glasses is more appropriate. These glasses help to accentuate the wine’s texture due to the light oxidation, which helps to enrich its full flavours.

2. Red Wines

Reds are typically served in rounder, wider and bigger bowls that are intended to mitigate the spiciness and bitterness that comes from the tannins. However, they also help to increase the intensity of the wine flavour and its aroma, by speeding up the oxidation rate. The wider opening of the glass allows the nose to be closer to the wine, which helps to accelerate the aromatic exposure. Experience indicates that red wine tastes better when served in stemware with wider bowls.

While this is the basic selection for red wine glasses, it can be refined further when you choose either Burgundy or Bordeaux, as the two main styles of glasses that are suitable for red wines of various shades.

Bordeaux glasses are much taller, and though the bowl is broad, it is slightly smaller. These glasses are specifically designed for Merlot, Sauvignon and Cabernet that are not only rich in tannins but are also dark, full-bodied wines.

Typically, these same glasses would also be used for semi and medium-bodied wines. They are perfect for dark wines such as Syrah and Malbec that have more spicy notes. But many people prefer standard classes for this medium category, which have slightly smaller openings compared to Bordeaux glasses.

Burgundy glasses are different from Bordeaux stemware. The former have wider bowls and are designed to collect all the intricate floral aromas of light-bodied wines such as Pinot Noir that are more delicate.

3. Rose Wines

Even while there is extensive debate on the right kind of stemware used for various wines and how important this choice is, Rose wine tends to get left out from the general discussions. Sometimes wine experts state that diamond-shaped glasses with narrow openings are best for Rose wines. The wider bowl helps to exhale the fruity-floral scents of these wines and the narrow end guides the aromas towards the nose.

4. Specialty Wines

In this category, for both the primary types- dessert and sparkling wines, there are specific glasses. Champagne, Prosecco and other sparkling wines are always served in fluted stemware as the narrow shape helps to maintain the aesthetics of the wine longer while keeping the carbonating feature intact as well.

Dessert wines like Porto are aromatic and sweet and are generally served in smaller wine glasses that have a narrow mouth. This shape helps to reduce evaporation while intensifying the aromas. Certain desert winds such as Sherry that have a higher alcohol content are best served in stemware with a narrow bowl and a fuller conical opening. This type of opening reduces the wines’ sweetness, as it directs the liquid to the back of the mouth.

Stemmed glasses add to the aesthetics of the wine, but also help to prevent warming up the white wines’ temperature, as it helps to keep the hand away from the bowl. Similarly, in the case of red wines, the right kind of stemware will help to maintain a higher temperature when the bowl is held underneath.

If you are a discerning wine lover, you would want to choose your stemware with care, just as you would want to have the right storage space for your precious wines. To find out about how Signature Cellars can help you design and construct a wine cellar that can provide the perfect environment for your wines, while adding value to your home, call us on 1300 570 636 or email Our experts will respond soon, to discuss your custom wine cellar project requirements.

Thanks for reading,
Neil Smallman
Signature Cellars
1300 570 636

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