You are using an old browser that may not function as expected.
For a better, safer browsing experience, please upgrade your browser.

Log in Become a Member


In the USA, the usual term for a wine glass with a stem (stemware); see under wine glasses.

Despite their many variations, wine glasses have the same basic structure. They consist of a foot, stem and goblet. The space between the poured wine and the upper rim of the glass is called the chimney. The biggest difference is the shape of the goblet. The more bulbous the goblet, the greater the surface area of the liquid. And the longer or higher the chimney, the greater the volume. The larger the surface and the volume, the more intensively the fragrances can unfold. There are also wine glasses without stems, some with handles. Such glasses are only accepted by purists for drinking water or for simple draught wines. Drinking a Grand Vin from Bordeaux from such a glass would be sacrilegious. But they are very popular, especially in southern countries. In the following, we will assume classic wine glasses.

Weingläser - Rotwein- und Weißweinglas, Karaffe

Choosing the right wine glasses

Choosing the right glasses is almost as important for optimal wine enjoyment as the right wine temperature. The guideline is to use generously proportioned glasses whose goblets taper towards the top in order to retain the aroma and bouquet of the wine in the goblet. This applies to most wines with a few exceptions. For an acidic wine, you can also use a glass whose bowl widens slightly at the top. White wine glasses usually have a relatively small volume so that the wine cannot warm up so quickly. Red wine glasses have a large volume; the large surface area allows the wine to absorb more oxygen and develop its bouquet better. This phenomenon, however, depends above all on the optimal ratio between surface area and volume. Such glasses are also called Bordeaux glasses. There are also specially shaped glasses for different varietal wines, which may seem exaggerated.

Weingläser von Riedel Serie Vinum - Bordeaux, Burgund, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay

There are special glasses for sweet wine or dessert wine with a much smaller volume than other wine glasses. For such drinks, quantities of no more than 0.1 litre are usually poured (i.e. not even an eighth of a litre). The goblet is much slimmer than in glasses for dry wines. But here, too, the goblet is tapered towards the...

Voices of our members

Dr. Edgar Müller

I have great respect for the scope and quality of the wein.plus encyclopaedia. It is a unique place to go for crisp, sound information on terms from the world of wine.

Dr. Edgar Müller
Dozent, Önologe und Weinbauberater, Bad Kreuznach

The world's largest Lexicon of wine terms.

26,385 Keywords · 46,991 Synonyms · 5,323 Translations · 31,719 Pronunciations · 202,830 Cross-references
made with by our author Norbert F. J. Tischelmayer. About the Lexicon