Red Wine Glass Style

6th Mar 2015

The Art of Drinking Red Wine 

In these colder months there is nothing I enjoy more than a nice glass of red wine while sitting in front of the fireplace.  Since we are experiencing an exceptionally long, cold winter and I am still enjoying my red wine, I thought I would share with you some helpful tips to getting the most out of your wine experience.

Do you love a smooth Merlot, a flavorful Syrah, or a bold Cabernet Sauvignon? A good red wine strives to be adored for its beauty, its flavor, and its aroma.   The shape of the glass colors your experience and interaction with the wine.  With the correct glass the flavor of the wine will be enhanced and the taste enriched.  The style of glass you are drinking out of will actually change how you taste the characteristics of the individual wines. 

Claus Riedel, a ninth-generation glassmaker, first speculated on this methodology. He believed that "wide, open glass shapes require us to sip by lowering the head, whereas a narrow rim forces the head to tilt backwards so that the liquid flows. This delivers and positions the beverage to different 'taste zones' of the palate."

This innovative method of tasting red wine is not about correcting a flaw in a specific wine but, rather, achieving a balance in bringing out the features and flavors of each style.

The right glassware can't make a bad wine good, 

but it can make a good wine more enjoyable.”

Cabernet, Merlot, Cabernet Franc 


For these styles of wines use a glass with a larger bowl and tapered at the rim. This means that the shape of the glass comes in at the top. The large bowl allows you plenty of room to swirl your wine, which allows the perfect amount of air into the wine to release those heavenly aromas you like so much. This is the most traditionally shaped red wine glass.

                     Shiraz, Syrah

When drinking a Shiraz use a glass that is more tapered towards the top.  The glass has a smaller aeration surface area but still has an aggressive taper to accentuate the aromas and flavor.  Think of a Shiraz glass as being a blend of a pinot and cabernet style glass.               

Pinot Noir 

pinot-w-dec.jpgWhen drinking a Pinot Noir choose a glass with an extremely wide bowl to maximize the aeration surface.  A dramatic tapering of the glass towards the rim concentrates the aromas and directs the wine onto the tip of the tongue.  

I hope this guide helps you capture the full experience of your wine.