World of Wine

White Wine Glasses by Riedel


Capturing the delicate aromas of white wines

What aromas and flavors do you associate with white wine? Perhaps peaches, citrus, and herbs? If you're more inclined to drink sweet or oaked white wines, maybe your mind goes more toward honey and roasted hazelnuts.

Whatever qualities your white wine displays, the wine glass you use is the vessel that communicates them to your palate. Keep reading to explore how Grape Varietal-Specific white wine glasses enhance your enjoyment of different varieties of white wine, from Oaked Chardonnay to Sauvignon Blanc and everything in between.


Why use specific glasses for different white wines?

It's no secret that any wine's smell and flavor vary considerably depending on the size and shape of the vessel from which we drink it. Wine glasses are, therefore, designed with several wine characteristics in mind, including the wine's body, complexity, and robustness.

At the most basic level, this means differentiating between white wine and red wine. White wines typically have more delicate aromas than red wines and are at their best when fresh and vibrant. White wine glasses, therefore, usually feature smaller, narrower bowls to preserve delicate, fresh aromas and prevent overexposure to oxygen. 

This is a good starting point; however, the white wine umbrella encompasses a wide range of flavors and qualities, which means they also have various glassware requirements. So, if we're looking to optimize our white wine experiences, we need to go beyond using the same universal white wine glass for every white wine variety and instead be more precise with our glassware designs. This is why we developed our RIEDEL Grape Varietal Specific Glassware collections - to give you precision-engineered wine glassware that allows you to enjoy specific wine varieties at their absolute best.

Sounds simple enough, but how do we apply this in practice? Using examples from our RIEDEL Veritas Collection, let's explore how we've designed our RIEDEL Grape Varietal Specific white wine glasses to maximize the characteristics of different white wines.


RIEDEL Riesling/Zinfandel

Riesling wines are known for their vibrant acidity and fruity aromas, and they often have a degree of residual sugar in the cases of semi-dry and particularly late-harvest Riesling wines.

To accommodate these contrasting qualities, such wines require a glass that offers balance, which the RIEDEL Veritas Riesling/Zinfandel glass does with its elongated bowl and narrowed opening. The narrow opening slightly subdues sugars, preventing them from dominating each sip while preserving the wine's fresh characteristics. The elongated bowl, on the other hand, delivers a smooth, seamless, and even pour onto the palate, preventing any one quality from dominating.

This glass allows Riesling to shine, delivering a crisp, refreshing taste with every sip. This shape is also the most versatile white wine glass in our RIEDEL Grape Varietal Specific collections, accommodating a variety of characteristics, including high minerality, high acidity, floral characteristics, and sweet, fruit-forward wines. We also recommend this glass for Zinfandel lovers.

RIEDEL Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc is celebrated for its zesty acidity and herbaceous notes, but some blends exhibit sweeter notes of honey. This combination calls for a glass that can develop more intense aromas while still retaining delicate flavors.

As with Riesling, the RIEDEL Veritas Sauvignon Blanc glass features a narrowed opening to capture the delicate floral notes and fruit aromas of Sauvignon Blanc wines. Where it differs is in its curvy, egg-like bowl, which allows the aromas of richer forms of Sauvignon Blanc to develop and mature without escaping the glass. This design also makes the RIEDEL Veritas Sauvignon Blanc glass an ideal host for some dessert wines.

RIEDEL Viognier/Chardonnay

RIEDEL Oaked Chardonnay

If unoaked Chardonnay is a little bolder than most white wines, Oaked Chardonnay takes this a step or two further. The oak-aging process gives these wines a fuller body, creamy mouthfeel, and pronounced notes of vanilla and butter that make them very different from the bright, zesty qualities people often expect from white wine.

At first glance, the RIEDEL Veritas Oaked Chardonnay glass may look more like a red wine glass than a white wine glass, but this is essential for complementing the qualities of an Oaked Chardonnay. Smaller white wine glasses can cause full-bodied white wines to become over-concentrated, so we went the other way with this glass. The aeration provided by this glass's wide, voluminous bowl allows richer-style white wines' qualities to expand and develop, emphasizing their finesse and balancing their aromas and flavors for a serene sipping experience.

RIEDEL Champagne Wine Glass