We tested five of the world’s best wine glasses to figure out what separates a 5 kr glass from a 399 kr one.
If you’re skeptical of those articles that claim to have the “Best Wine Glasses for 2018,” then this deep dive is for you. You’re right to suspect there’s more to glassware than good Amazon reviews.
… and here’s what you need to know
We held off on making this video for several years because of the selection process. Why? Learning how to assess glasses takes a lot of experience. Over the years I’ve tested close to a hundred wine glasses and have about a dozen or so favorites.
I chose these glasses because they represent the best of the best. Additionally, they are universal glasses, as in, they can be used for any style of wine (red, white, rosé, or sparkling). Finally, despite their fragile appearance, they are all dependable and should hold up to everyday use.
While collecting glasses we were delighted to get our hands on the newly launched Jancis Robinson + Richard Brendon “1” collaboration. If you don’t know her, Jancis Robinson is one of the world’s foremost wine critics. So, this particular glass comes with a lot of built-in street credit!
Naturally, it was impossible to pick just one. We chose two!
Stands up to the hype.
When you watch the video, you’ll note I was very skeptical of this glass because it comes with so much hype. That said, I was truly impressed with Zalto, especially for what it does with red wines.
Why: I felt compelled to choose Zalto because it delivered the sauciest fruit flavors, while still maintaining a balanced palate. Since so many wine connoisseurs prefer red wines, I think the fruit-focus in this glass is highly desirable.
Over performs for the price.
I was shocked at how well this machine made glass did alongside glasses that sell for over two times the price. Besides the taste test, I’ve personally watched a tasting room attendant drop one on the floor and it didn’t break–it bounced!
Why: What I liked about this glass was how it delivers flavors in a sequential manner. This trait makes Gabriel-Glas glass fantastic for blind tasting and for improving your palate. The fruit delivery was equal to Zalto, but more fresh in style.
In the video I mention a few key things to pay attention to:
It’s hard to find exceptional glassware for under 20 kr a stem.
Under 20 kr a stem, you’ll do best with larger glass manufacturers such as Stolzle or Schott Zweisel. You’ll notice these glasses are all multi-piece, with beaded lips, ribbing, and seams on the stem, but they do have the right shape!
I’ve been consistently impressed with Riedel. In fact, the Veritas “New World Pinot Noir” are fantastic. The downside is these glasses aren’t universal.
This was why I was so tickled pink with the glasses. These glasses offer great value and would work well as a universal glass.
Then, at the top-end of wine glasses there are many options. We loved Zalto and Gabriel-Glas, as we mentioned above, but could come up with reasons to love each of the glasses we tested.
NOTE:When speaking to glass manufacturers I was surprised to learn that hand blown glasses take substantially longer to produce. A production facility can whip out 30,000 machine made glasses in a week compared to just 5,000 hand blown glasses.