Ok, here’s the deal — I really read/follow a lot of stuff about wine — blogs,forums, etc. The other day I was in the CellarTracker forum and came across a post that basically asked the question : “When drinking a particular wine, does the glass you drink it from make any difference?”. I had come across this discussion previously; most notably was the G Vaynerchuk WLTV episode #111
In the WLTV episode, Gary was tasting the same wine, using several different glass shapes and sizes (all the glasses were Riedel).
The question in the CellarTracker forum was more oriented to tasting the same wine from different manufacturers glasses, all of the same(or near) size and shape. Glass manufacturer marketing hype promotes a definite difference. The general concensus in the forum was that glasses do make a difference and several glasses were touted as being the best. The predominate three were:
Riedel, Spiegelau, and Eisch. Each manufacturer clearly promotes their glass as providing a superior wine appreciation experience.
Ok, now I’m intrigued! Does the glass really make a difference? One way to find out —:
I purchased three different “
” style glasses – 1 Riedel, 1Spiegelau Vino Grande, and 1 Eisch (breathable). I used these along with my “every-day” Bodum stemless tumbler. Bordeaux
As you can see in the picture, all three glasses are very near in size and shape – even the stemless tumbler is pretty close when just looking at the bowl.
The wine while it may or may not be important here was Kilkanoon Killerman’s Run Shiraz/Grenache.
The wine was poured after the bottle had been open maybe 30 minutes. I gave each of the glasses a good swirl and checked the nose. Here are my initial observations (please excuse my descriptions as I’m very much a novice at this).
Riedel – lots of big fruit, but I most detected what I thought was alcohol and thought this will bring some heat.
Next was the Spiegelau — same big fruit, but much smoother – some alcohol/heat, but definitely less that the Riedel.
Next was the Eisch — Same big fruit, but very smooth with no alcohol/heat as before
Last came the double walled stemless — almost nothing – much less fruit …
At this point, I’m probably about 2-3 minutes into the test.
Tasting very much tracked the nose:
Riedel – big fruit – some harshness/alcohol/heat
Spiegelau – same big fruit and considerably less alcohol/heat.
Eisch – same big fruit with almost no alcohol/heat.
Tumbler – big fruit, for some reason somewhat dull with noticeable alcohol/heat.
After about 10 minutes in the glass, they all pretty well evened out with only subtle differences though still detectable.
So, my preference – glass-wise was Eisch, Spiegelau, Riedel, and the tumbler a distant 4th.
A couple of hours later when my wife came home from work, I asked her to help me pick a wine for an upcoming party. I didn’t tell her that she would be tasting the same wine and only the glasses were different.
Her conclusions in order of preference were: The Eisch, Riedel, Spiegelau, and again the tumbler a distant 4th. She preferred the Eisch by a wide margin, and was waffling between the Riedel and Spiegelau for 2nd and 3rd.
She was blown away when I told her it was the same wine, only different glasses.
Again, not a scientific test, but very interesting and eye-opening for me.
So, based on this test, I had to purchase new set of wine glasses. I really wanted to buy the Eisch glasses, but ended up buying the Spiegelau Vino Grande glasses – why??
As you can see in the picture, The Eisch glass(the first one) is about an inch taller that the others — and it wouldn’t fit in any of our cabinets.
Funny thing — my wife (who has personal comandeered the Eisch as her own) suggested we might consider new cabinets!!
Posted by DRHamp as Wine-Wine-Wine at 10:41 AM UTC