Wine glasses are a huge subject, so this page will likely evolve as time goes on. The following provides general information. I often use Riedel glasses as examples. The company has numerous tiers or lines of glassware, from their lower priced to Sommelier, the highest priced. Riedel photos are exquisitely illustrative of what a beautiful wine glass can be, and offers examples of specific glasses for specific wines. (I DO NOT SELL RIEDEL OR ANY GLASSWARE LINE – in fact, I don’t sell anything). It’s easy to start a nice glass collection without spending grocery money. See purchasing suggestions below the photos, and a Spiegelau video, a high-quality glass producer (dishwasher safe, shatter-resistant – interesting, huh?) now owned by Riedel.
Look at this beauty for sweeter wines: Sauternes, Alsatians, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Trockenbeerenauslese, Eiswein, etc.
Glassware can be pricey. For the pricey price you get incredible beauty a bowl designed to aerate the wine and deliver it to the sensitive areas of the tongue ☛ design mechanisms to advance the bouquet to it’s peak and straight to your nose ☛ a perfect glass lip – so nice to sip from ☛ a stem with a perfect feel and crystal that allows the hue of the wine to shine.
We can’t always afford the best or even next to best, and the “best” is subjective anyway, so here are a few tips:
● Just starting your collection and/or budget-minded? Buy a 12-ounce lead-free glass. You’ll find some of the best wine glass producers market a 12-ounce glass for white wines and larger for red –– ignore that for now. Buy the best 12-ounce glass you can afford and use it for both red and white dinner wines. It’s a great start.
● The hallmarks of a proper glass: Thinner throughout, no roll or bump at the lip, no seams anywhere.
● Always buy clear glass with clear stems – no colors until you can afford more than one set of wine glasses. The color is for ‘fun.’ Clear glass/crystal shows the natural hue of the wine. (An exception: the German Hock glass with it’s green stem to give nearly colorless Rieslings a pretty tinge of color).
● Buy one glass a paycheck at $5 to $10 and before you know it, you’ll have a nice collection.
● Check Home Goods if you have one near, and if do, lucky you. I find amazing lead-free crystal at Home Goods. I don’t have one in my town, but when I travel, I search out Home Goods locations before I leave home.
● Amazon has a set of Riedle Ouverture (one of the lesser expensive in the Riedel lineup), twelve glasses, it says (3-13-16), for the price of eight glasses: Four reds, four whites and four sparkling wine flutes. Today’s price $63.99. I see the same set for $80+ around the InterTubes. Steinmart and Target also carry some Riedel lines.
One last caution: do some research on lead-free crystal, some of which include new processes. Schott Zweisel’s Diva Tritan Crystal series is an example. Minute amounts of lead may leach into wine served in lead crystal glasses –– the question is: how often do you drink from them. If only on special occasions, a leaded glass shouldn’t be a health problem, but your comfort level is the decider.