Importance of Wine Glass Stems

In shopping for bar glassware, there is a wide range of essential factors to note. In most instances, the two most common considerations in choosing glassware are the shapes and sizes. However, a factor that is overlooked on most occasions is the height of the glass. Interestingly, just like the curve and the width of the glass, the height and stem size also affect your drinking experience.

What Purpose Do Stems Serve in Glasses?

Stem and bowl wine glasses were first manufactured in the 17th century. However, the main reasons for creating them at the time remain valid even today. These include:

1. Maintaining the serving temperature of the Wine

The stem and bowl glassware is designed to reduce the proximity of your hand and the bowl. The reduced proximity prevents your hand from warming the bowl and its content. This is why the correct way to hold a wine glass is by the stem and not the bowl.

2. Convenient Swirling

The stem and bowl glass design also makes it relatively easier to swirl the content of the glass. Swirling helps optimize the aroma and flavor of the wine and is best achieved by holding the base of the glass on a flat surface and moving it in a counterclockwise manner.

However, apart from these two primary functions, the stem and bowl glass also serves an aesthetic purpose giving the wine a fantastic presentation.

Average Height of a Wine Glass

Typically, wine glasses should be between 6 and 10 inches tall. However, some specialty glasses might fall outside this range. Also, sometimes the height of the glass can indicate the type of wine it is used for specifically. They used for white wine are shorter than red wine glasses, and in most instances, red wine glasses have bigger bowls to help improve the aroma of the wine.

Port glasses and snifters are other types of glasses that shorter stems than both red and white wine. For ice and dessert wines, there are specialized glasses that taper up into a bowl just line red wine glasses. The glasses are also designed to aid swirling as this also helps activate the wine. Champagne glasses are designed to enhance the production of bubbles that is characteristic of Champagne. This is perhaps why Champagne glasses are referred to as flutes. They are tall and narrow and usually have a deep bowl due so the bubbles from the Champagne can rise to froth.

Cordial glasses are also shorter than most of these other types of glasses and are used to drink flavored liquor. Although they are also used to drink fruit juices and other non-alcoholic beverages in some parts of the world.

Pros and Cons of Long and Short-Stemmed Wine Glasses

Pros of Short-stemmed glasses

  • Easier to Handle

Short-stemmed glasses are relatively easier to hold than long-stemmed. This makes it preferred by more experienced wine enthusiasts who might intentionally want to warm the glass slightly.

  • Higher Stability

Apart from its relatively easier handling, short-stemmed glasses have a lower center of gravity, which improves their stability. The implication of this is that these types of glassware are comparatively less likely to tip.

  • Cleaning

In most instances, long-stemmed glasses do not easily fit into the dishwasher, making them more difficult to clean. Also in storing them, you would need long-stemmed bowls that are more difficult to find than short stemmed bowls.

 Pros of Long-Stemmed glasses

  • Better Swirling

While you can swirl with short-stemmed glasses, it is relatively easier with long-stemmed.

  • Reduces Smudging

With long-stemmed glasses, you are less likely to hold the bowl of the glass during use thereby reducing the chance of smudging or any other unwanted contact with the bowl of the glass.

  • Increased Depth

Long-stemmed glasses also have relatively higher depths, which make them better for concentrating the wine. This improves the quality of the wine, thereby allowing you to enjoy the flavor and aroma better.

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