The quest for the perfect wine glass has become the wine connoisseur’s holy grail. It is no longer a matter only of aesthetic discernment or social snobbery but it must also be a serious means of enhancing the wine experience.
Riedel and Spiegelau, hereditary glassmakers from Austria and Germany, respectively, have taken this notion to dizzy heights. Not content with specially designed glasses for champagne and a couple of other basic varieties, the Reidel collection embraces Burgundy and Brunello, Tempranillo and tequila, with minute differences in glassware for vintage port and tawny port, for Champagne and vintage Champagne, and Cognac VSOP and Cognac XO! Spiegelau follows a similar philosophy but with fewer shapes.
An elegant dinner party, where a different wine accompanies each course, is enhanced with a table setting that includes a wine glass for each wine. The glasses should be arranged in the order they are to be used and right to left. Wine is traditionally poured from the right, while food is served from the left. The food being served will dictate the choice of wine, but you will most likely begin with tall-stemmed hock glasses for whites and progress to wine goblets for reds then use a smaller glass for aperitifs. A matching water glass is an elegant touch.
With its several new initiatives, Chile must now surely be one of the most exciting wine producing countries in the world. Among the things contributing to its success is diversity – of terroir, grape varieties, and, of course, prices.
Labelled variously as Jerez, Xéres and Sherry, this fortified wine from the Jerez region is Spain’s most glorious.