Since the introduction of the Sommeliers series in the 1970s, the Riedel brand has become known for its ingenuity in the world of wine glasses. This year the 10th and 11th generations, Georg and Maximilian Riedel, have joined forces to bring oenophiles their most technologically advanced series yet: Performance. Performance combines decades of experience in grape varietal specific glassware with an optic design that heightens the drinker’s experience.
It is the first time in Riedel’s history that both Georg and Maximilian have worked on a series together. Riedel CEO Maximilian says, “My father and I have been working together for the last 20 years but always on the business side, rarely on the design side. I had my experience and he had his experience, and the outcome was Performance.”
With three generations of research, development and experience in creating functional, grape varietal specific glassware, Georg and Maximilian Riedel challenged themselves to improve on what had gone before.
The pair originally planned for the line to be handmade, but their team of craftspeople at their handmade factory in Kufstein were already under pressure from global demand on existing lines. Maximilian recalls, “I said to my father, we made such a quantum jump [in machine production] when we developed Riedel Veritas. Why don’t we challenge our technicians and make it on our machines?”
The result is Performance – a technologically advanced and user-friendly collection of grape varietal specific glasses.
Performance is the first Riedel varietal series to feature bowls with a light optic impact.
However Maximilian says, “When you walk through our museum here in Kufstein, you see many beautifully shaped glasses created by grandfather in optic, starting from the 1950s to the 1970s.” This traditional technique hails from the island of Moran in Venice, where Maximilian spent time learning about glassmaking as a 16 year old. Riedel has used the optic effect before, in pieces like the limited edition Cobra Verde decanter, however it was always simply a design feature.
Of the subtlety in the optic design, Maximilian says, “Our glasses cater to wine consumption, to the beauty of the wine, and should never overtake that fact.”
When the glasses were put to the test, they discovered the glasses emphasised wine’s characteristics differently to their previous series. In Performance, wine shows more minerality than fruit, and shows more of the terrior. But the real miracle is the length of the aftertaste and the structure on the palate. Maximilian calls this the Optic Impact.
The series includes seven shapes: Cabernet, Shiraz, Pinot Noir, Oaked Chardonnay, Riesling, Champagne Wine Glass, and Digestive. Each glass sits at 245mm tall to create aesthetic unity with this unique table setting. The series also features the new, larger Riesling glass, for improved aromatic experience.
Check out the below video on the new Performance series or click below to purchase.