Top Red Wine Glasses

The design of a red wine glass is critical to maximizing the flavors and aromas of the wine. Depending on the variety and type; red wine glasses can be a variety of styles, however in general, most will have a larger bowl compared to a white wine glass.

 

However, there will be subtle differences between the different grapes, hence the bowl has to be shaped to maximize the primary, secondary and tertiary flavors, whilst minimizing the effect of tannin and alcohol. Hence as you can imagine a young left-bank Bordeaux would need a larger glass than say a Northern-Rhone Syrah. So let us look at which wine glasses are recommended per wine style.

 

To see the full list of the top red wine glasses see here   

Quick Recommendations on red wine glasses

The below glasses highlight my favorite and go-to wine glasses dependant on the style:

Why is the shape and size of wine glasses so important? 

We spend so much time selecting a bottle of wine, yet when it comes to the glass, we too often just use any glass without too much thought! The technology of wine glasses has never been so high, and whether you are drinking a young or mature, old or new world, red or white wine, there will be a design out there for you.

 

Some believe wine glasses are designed to look good, yet this is far from the truth. Brands such as Riedel and Zalto have been scientifically optimizing wine glasses for the last few years, to ensure not just the aromas are on point, but the mouthfeel and textures are also enhanced. When selecting a wine glass I always ask myself the question; how long do I need this wine to be exposed to air for? This is not the only question but it certainly helps to guide me in terms of selecting the correct glassware. So if you are drinking a young Napa Cabernet then you will want to select the Riedel Extreme Cabernet Sauvignon Glass , compared to Northern Rhone Syrah where I might be more inclined to try the Riedel Sommelier Hermitage Glass.

Should I use a stemless wine glass?

The difference between a stemless and a 'normal' wine glass is that stemless wine glasses do not have the stem, hence it is just the bowl. Does it make a big difference? In my opinion, there has been less research into stemless wine glasses, hence there are fewer options available on the market. Also the one reason I do not recommend stemless wine glasses is that whilst holding the glass you will directly warm up the wine due to your body heat. I also enjoy the feel of a stemmed wine glass. However, for those who enjoy the feel of a stemless wine glass, I would recommend the Riedel O wine Tumbler. 

Why are red wine glasses bigger than white wine glasses?

Red wine glasses tend to be larger than white wine glasses since typically a red wine needs more air to breathe. The shape of the wine glass is critical  to ensure the tannins are reduced and the aromas open and the palate is not 'closed'. Apart from certain Chardonnays, most white wines require a small style of wine glass to keep the temperature low, freshness and aromas compact. In terms of temperature, this makes sense since a large wine glass will have a large surface area so the wine will reach room temperature quicker. Chardonnays tend to be an exception to this rule since they tend to need a little more air than most other white wines, hence a larger glass is often used.  

Top Red Wine Glasses

No.4 

Recommended

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  • Entry-level, excellent quality-price-ratio red wine glass from Riedel.

  • Light, easy to handle, very versatile with works with both red and even white wines.

  • Smaller compared to other red wine glasses, which means it might not be optimal for young, full-bodied reds.

  • Perfect size for Somms/professionals who enjoy blind-tasting.

  • Great everyday wine glass at less than $15/ glass 

$29.90 USD

No.4 

Recommended

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  • The top stemless wine glass for all red wines

  • A large bowl allows the wine to properly breathe. 

  • light and elegant, yet dishwasher safe.

  • One negative point is regarding the temperature of the wine, which may increase if you hold the glass for an extended period of time.

  • Not optimized for a certain variety or style of wine.

  • Top Stemless wine glass at less than $12/ glass 

$45.00 USD

No.4 

Recommended

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  • Hand-blown crystal, designed in Europe

  • Light, elegant, and optimized to perfectly express a variety of both red and white wines

  • Dishwasher safe as well as 100% lead-free

  • Quite fragile, so care is needed when handling, these can break easily.

  • At close to $100/ glass, these are premium wine glasses, however, when asked these are my favorite wine glasses I own.

No.1 Recommended

Best red wine glass for Napa Cabernet/Bordeaux Cabernet/Merlot blends

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  • These Cabernet Glasses have been perfectly designed to optimize the flavors and textures of Cabernet Sauvignon and other full-bodied red wines.

  • This red wine glass has a large bowl to be able to allow the wine to properly breathe; Allowing for wines with high tannins to soften and fruit notes to be more present.

  • For professionals as well as amateurs alike.  

  • Slightly heavier than most wine glasses in its category 

  • Points on Wine No.1 recommendation of a full-bodied red wine glass.

$49.00 USD

No.4 

Recommended

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  • This scientific Pinot Noir glass is perfect for Pinot Noir and Nebbiolo as well as other high acid and moderate tannins red wines.

  • The shape allows for the fruit profile to be perfectly displayed, and diminishes the sometimes aggressive acidity. 

  • One of the most beautiful and elegant wine glasses on the market, yet the shape is designed to perfection.

  • Machine-made and dishwasher safe.

  • Excellent quality-price ratio, and one of the top Pinot Noir wine glasses on the market.  

$35.00 USD

No.4 

Recommended

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  • Hand-made crystal wine glass, which is also dishwasher safe

  • Designed to balance the fruit, black pepper, earthy characteristics of Syrah, and other medium-bodied wines, showcasing a velvety structure and a savory finish.

  • Suitable for Syrah, along with Sangiovese, Tempranillo and Zinfandel.

  • A more premium wine glass for both Sommeliers and those who regularly drink Northern Rhone wines or equivalent medium-full bodied red wines 

  • The only drawback is the cost, at $93 USD, this might put certain consumers off, the Riedel Extreme Cabernet Glass would tick most boxes for those looking for a similar glass. 

$93.00 USD

No.2 

Recommended

Best red wine glass for mature red wines 

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  • This hand-made crystal wine glass is perfect for mature red wines.

  • The glass allows to perfectly harmonize Bordeaux wines ensuring hard edges are smoothed out, tannins reduced and the fruit profile is optimized.

  • This is one of the top wine glasses for mature wines, the shape of this glass ensures no wine is too young to enjoy.

  • One of the few wine glasses that has been designed to optimize both young and mature Bordeaux as well as Napa full-bodied red wines.

$125.00 USD

 
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