Holding Glasses

There is a Right Way to Hold a Wine Glass

It may seem a bit unnecessary to discuss how to hold a wine glass; but, there is a right way and a wrong way and it does make a difference.

Wine is served in stemware because the temperature at which wine is served can have a profound impact on the tastes and the enjoyment it yields. Wine glasses should always be held by the stem of the glass rather than the bowl since the heat of your hand will quickly warm the liquid.

Warming a wine above its desired serving temperature will yield unwanted and unpleasant characteristics. The alcohol in wine will give a sharpness or ‘bite’ to the taste if the wine is served above 74 F. degrees.

Enough said. Just hold the glass by the stem unless the wine is served at too cool a temperature and you need to warm it for a minute or two.

Serving Temperatures

45 degrees (F.) / 7 degrees (C.) – Most white wines you’ll come across including Chenin Blancs, Sauvignon Blancs, Loire Wines, Rieslings and ‘everyday’ Chardonnays. If they are served colder, the aromas and flavors will be minimized and you won’t get full enjoyment.

50 degrees (F.) / 10 degrees (C.) – Full bodied, high quality white wines including Sauternes and rich white Burgundies. Light red wines like Beaujolais.

60 degrees (F.) / 15 degrees (C.) – Red wines including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Bordeaux, Zinfandel, Rhones and Syrah/Shiraz.

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