How to Choose the Best White Wine Glasses
If you’re into wine, you know there’s a wine glass for every type. White wine glasses are among the most popular. What makes them unique?
White wine glasses are essential for every glassware cabinet, as they’re the most versatile. Unsurprisingly, universal wine glasses are often inspired by white wine glasses in shape and size—making every white wine glass universal in a way.
Let’s talk about white wine glasses and how to choose the best ones. After all, not all white wine glasses are the same!
Table of Contents
White Wine Glasses vs. Red Wine Glasses
There are many types of wine glasses, but red and white wine glasses are the most prominent and the ones every wine enthusiast should have in their repertoire.
Both styles are similar, featuring relatively wide bowls and openings, a thin stem, and a base. However, compare them side by side, and you’ll quickly realize red wine glasses are larger than their white counterparts. That’s because red wine has more volatile compounds; therefore, it needs more room to “breathe.”
Besides, white wine is generally served at a cooler temperature than red wine, so you want shorter pours to prevent the wine from getting too warm.
Types of White Wine Glasses
Every glassware company has a collection of white wine glasses designed for distinct types of white wine. However, you don’t need a wine glass for every wine grape and style. There are three leading white wine glasses to consider: stemware for fruity and uncomplicated white wine, glassware for oaked white wine, and specialty wine glasses for dessert wine.
The most common white wine glass is a medium-sized glass with a relatively wide bowl that works for all styles. It’s the one you’ll find at restaurants, for example. These “standard” wine glasses work great with white wine fermented in stainless steel—with fruity, herbal, or floral notes but no hints of malo-lactic fermentation or oak.
- Use these glasses for Sauvignon Blanc, Dry Riesling, Muscadet, Unoaked Chardonnay, and Pinot Grigio.
For full-bodied white wines made with malo-lactic fermentation that spent some time in a barrel, a wider bowl will suit you best. That’s because these wines are more aromatic and require more swirling.
- Use wider wine glasses for oak-aged Chardonnay, white Rhone blends, and aromatic grapes like Viognier.
White wine glasses for dessert wine are generally small, as a couple of ounces of this precious liquid are often more than enough.
- Use dessert white wine glasses for late harvest, noble rot, and ice wine.
Other than that, choose the right white wine glass for the wine style on hand!
Stemless White Wine Glasses
Stemless wine glasses have been trending in recent years; they're especially popular for their unpretentious look and feel. Casual get-togethers call for everyday drinking glasses, and stemless wine tumblers fit the bill. However, stemless wine glasses are not recommended for formal wine tastings or for pouring nice wine at a dinner party.
Stemless glassware doesn’t let you swirl the wine like with stemmed glassware, you can’t fully appreciate the wine’s color, and you warm the wine with heat from your palms, which doesn’t happen when holding a wine glass by the stem.
What to Look for When Buying White Wine Glasses
Now that we’ve discussed the difference between red and white wine glasses and the basic types of stemware, let’s talk about choosing the right one for you.
We’re all different and have unique needs. It’s easy to see how a restaurant or catering company, for example, would need certain types of glassware which might not be suitable for household wine enthusiasts.
The size and shape of the wine glasses are up to you. You’ll have to do some browsing to find the design you like most. What’s not a matter of taste is quality. Ensure your glassware is made by a reputable producer, preferably with crystal instead of glass and using a mouth-blown technique.
Look for shiny wine glasses with a thin rim and a round bowl that narrows toward the opening. A slender stem is always a plus, but the quality of the material and the artisanship behind the piece are what matter most.
The Best White Wine Glasses to Consider
Grassl Glass Mineralité
Mineralité is the perfect white wine glass for crisp white wines, dry rosés, and fresh sparkling wines—especially those fermented in stainless steel. With a 430ml capacity and a 230mm height, the Grassl Mineralité is balanced and lightweight, allowing the taster to swirl the wine with ease.
Grassl Glass Liberté
This versatile white wine glass is wonderful for white, rosé, and sparkling wine. This 460ml mouth-blown piece is 92mm in diameter and 230 mm in height. The Grassl Liberté is ideal for whites aged in oak, but any white wine will shine in this elegant wine glass.