Essential Glassware – Red Wine

A red-wine glass is an essential ingredient for your home bar. Not only is a red wine glass essential for the consumption of vino, it’s also one of the go-to glasses to serve the current en vogue pre-Prohibition era cocktails, as well as sangria and fruit based cocktails.

While red wine glasses come in a number of styles, they start around nine ounces, average 12 to 14 ounces and go much larger. Red-wine glasses have a wide, round bowl that holds the wine in order to allow for oxidation (when the wine is exposed to air), which subtly alters the wine’s flavor and adds smoothness.

There are two main red-wine glasses: The first is the Bordeaux glass. This red wine glass has a wide, round bowl and is used for hearty wines, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Malbec. The second is the Burgundy glass. This glass has a wider and rounder bowl than the Bordeaux glass, which trap the aromas of the wine and decreases oxidization. Bordeaux glasses are used for more delicate red wines, like Pinot Noir, Nebbiolo and Gamay.

When using the red wine glass for wine, fill slightly less than half full (make sure that there is enough room in the glass to allow for oxidization). When using the red wine glass for cocktails, you can fill more than half way but you should be careful as red-wine glasses can often contain far more ounces than you would want to serve in a cocktail.

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