Does the Wine Glass we use really matter?

I have been a bit of an advocate for “the right glass should be used when serving wine” Today I had this reinforced upon me in an organised staff training session with John Hinckley, one of Riedel’s Business Manager’s and an expert on the glassware they provide, as you would imagine.

Wine tasting in The Drammery at Taynuilt Hotel

Wine tasting in The Drammery at Taynuilt Hotel

He gave us a very brief history of Riedel who this year celebrate 260 years in business, so certainly established and masters of their craft. This was evident as John talked through the glassware, discussing areas you don’t really think twice about. The rim is laser cut and polished giving a perfect delivery of the wine, the stem is perfectly smooth and joined in such a way to the main body of the glass it is almost seamless. The glass itself offers the perfect clarity to observe your wine. Each glass is designed with specific wine traits in mind that dictate the shape and the apertures and are all focused to maximise delivery of the wine onto specific taste receptors and to extenuate aromas.

It is not until you taste wines in the glassware designed for them and then in alternative glasses that the idea can be fully realised. We tasted a very good Chardonnay that John said was a real favourite of his and I could see why. A real classic, big, bold Chardonnay full of flavour and very pronounced poured into the Riedel Veritas Chardonnay glass and as a wine tasting goes it was superb. We then transferred the very same wine into a glass designed for Riesling and what we had was a fantastic wine that we had just enjoyed now became over alcoholic on the aromas, very bland and pretty terrible in tasting!

The glassware makes a massive difference in how you the customer can enjoy wines, especially in a restaurant environment. John’s examples made so much sense and echos why I love Riedel glassware. They are tools for us to use as Sommeliers to give the Diner/ Guest the best possible experience in the short time we are at table-side and we need great tools to deliver wines in the best possible way we can.

What is the point in going into a restaurant and handing over your hard earned money to have it delivered in a glass that will not allow you to enjoy what you have purchased and can in some cases leave you with a pretty poor opinion on what is in fact a great wine.

At Taynuilt Hotel I think we will look to expand and invest in how we serve our wines and be able now to confidently tell you as Diners/ Guests why we have served this wine in this glass and hope that as with everything else we do here, make your stay and dining experience that little more memorable.


David Lapsley
General Manager and Sommelier
Taynuilt Hotel and Restaurant