Spy Valley’s Chief Winemaker Paul Bourgeois explains what to drink from – and why.
Have you ever wondered how much difference the size and shape of a wine glass can make to the taste of a wine?
Glass design is both art and science. The shape and size of the glass influences how the aroma is delivered to your nostrils, how the wine enters your mouth, and which parts of your tongue receive the wine first.
If you need convincing, try this at home:
Pick up a bottle of your favourite New Zealand wine. Collect a selection of glasses differing in size and shape and pour a small amount to taste into each one. It is important to swirl the glass holding the stem to release the aroma of the wine, then breathe it in with your nose just touching the edge of the glass. Which glass shape allows for the more prominent aromas?
Next take a sip, allow the wine to be tasted on all areas of your tongue’s taste buds, swirl it around the inside of your mouth and swallow. Is there a size of glass that allows for a more flavourful taste?
A good rule of thumb is to choose a long slender glass for bubbly, a medium sized glass with a relatively small rim for whites, and a larger glass for red wine.
Spy Valley Secret #24 – The perfect glass shape:
Sparkling wines and Champagne
A slender flute preserves the bubbles due to the long shape of the glass and the cone shape of the bottom of the bowl just above the stem. This is where the bubbles will form a steady stream while you are sipping.
A moderate sized bowl with a smaller rim allows for the concentration of aromas for white wines, which only makes Sauvignon Blanc all the more fruity. However there is always an exception. A full bodied white, such as an oaked Chardonnay, is often preferred in a slightly wider style glass to accentuate the creamy texture.
A larger glass, with a wider rim allows the aromas to emerge and air to interact with the wine, heightening its flavour. This is also the reason why red wine is often decanted.
Take up the challenge!
Why not experiment with different styles of wine, a red, white, and bubbly, and tell us how you get on here on our Facebook page