Tag Archives: wine glasses

luminarc

Rose week giveaway 2019: Luminarc wine glasses

Luminarc wine glassesToday, to celebrate the blog’s 12th rose extravaganza, we’re giving away four Luminarc wine glasses

And the winner is: Seena Spencer, who selected 272; the winning number was 274 (screen shot to the left). Thanks to everyone who participated.


Today, to celebrate the blog’s 12th annual rose extravaganza, we’re giving away four Luminarc wine glasses. The complete contest rules are here. Pick a number between 1 and 1,000 and leave it in the comment section of this post. You can’t pick a number someone else has picked, and you need to leave your guess in the comments section of this post — no email entries or entries on other posts. Unless the number is in the comments section of this post, the entry won’t count.

If you get the blog via email or RSS, you need to go to this exact post on the website to enter (click the link to get there). At about 5 p.m. central today, I’ll go to random.org and generate the winning number. The person whose entry is closest to that number gets the wine glasses.

Thursday Birthday week 2018 giveaway: Four Schott Zweisel wine glasses

Win four Schott Zweisel wine glasses

The winner is George Christo, who picked 75. The winning number was 80. (screen shot to the right).


Today, to celebrate the blog’s 10th anniversary, we’re giving away Four Schott Zweisel wine glasses, just like the ones the Wine Curmudgeon uses. This is the the fourth of five daily giveaways; check out this post to see the final prize.

Complete contest rules are here. Pick a number between 1 and 1,000 and leave it in the comment section of this post. You can’t pick a number someone else has picked, and you need to leave your guess in the comments section of this post — no email entries or entries on other posts. Unless the number is in the comments section of this post, the entry won’t count.

If you get the blog via email or RSS, you need to go to this exact post on the website to enter (click the link to get there). At about 5 p.m. central today, I’ll go to random.org and generate the winning number. The person whose entry is closest to that number gets the glasses.

Bigger wine glasses: Marketing ploy, health risk, or just coincidence?

bigger wine glassesA British study says we use bigger wine glasses than ever before – but do we know why we do?

A friend of mine is convinced that wine bottles hold less than they used to, insisting that she only gets two glasses from a bottle instead of the four or five of years past. It turns out my friend is onto something, though not quite in the way she thinks. It’s not that the bottles hold less, but that we’re using bigger wine glasses. Lots and lots bigger.

That’s the surprising result from a 2017 British study that found that wine glasses were one-sixth smaller in the 1700s and have gotten bigger since then. That means a full-to-the-rim glass 300 years ago was the equivalent of half a pour today – 2 ½ ounces vs. a typical 5-ounce glass of wine (or five glasses to a 750 ml bottle).

The study was conducted by health researchers and appeared in a British medical journal, so it focused on the effects of too much drinking. In this, say the authors, the evolution of bigger wine glasses might be related to alcoholism and binge drinking (the latter a particular problem in Britain). If the glass is bigger, aren’t we going to drink more?

The authors are careful not to go much further, emphasizing that “greater affordability, availability, and marketing of alcohol products, and more liberal licensing. …” has led to increased drinking in the last 75 years. We’d also have to know alcoholism rates starting in the 1700s, plus wine consumption (gin, in fact, was the British drink of choice in the late 17th and early 18th centuries). And then we would still need to figure out a way to correlate that data to begin to understand if there is a relationship between excess drinking and bigger wine glasses.

The missing link

I doubt that link exists, given the often astonishing levels of drinking in the pre-industrial West. What’s more interesting is why glass sizes increased, something else the study doesn’t do much with. One reason was technology – the development of lead crystal n the late 17th century made it possible to produce less fragile and larger glasses, while the discovery of the Pyrex process in the late 19th century made even bigger glasses common.

In addition, what’s the relationship between improved wine quality and larger glasses? Bigger glasses allow us to better appreciate the wine’s flavors and aromas. Who knew that was necessary – or even possible – given the poor quality of most wine until the beginning of the 20th century?

Finally, how could the authors overlook the role of capitalism, which not coincidentally took root in 18th century Britain? Perhaps the reason for bigger wine glasses is as simple as marketing. The rise of capitalism and industrialization meant there were more and more rich people who wanted to show off their new wealth, and what better way to do that than with fancy wines served in fancy glasses? Isn’t that one of the joys of capitalism? That someone will always be around to sell us things we don’t really need, and that especially applies to wine glasses.

Graphic courtesy of The Guardian, using a Creative Commons license

Enough with the Champagne glass conspiracy already – can’t we just drink and enjoy?

Champgne glass

$60 will buy two Reidel Veritas Champagne glasses — and won’t we sleep better at night after that purchase?

Once again, we’re being told that we aren’t drinking bubbly from the correct glasses, and we’d better stop – or else

A couple of months ago, when I wrote about the most recent Champagne glass conspiracy, I thought we were done with worrying about what a Champagne glass should look like. The glass in that post was so over the top that only the geekiest among us would pay attention. And the rest of us could enjoy our bubbly in whatever glasses we had, content that the wine business has passed us by.

Silly me.

Once again, we’re being told that we aren’t drinking bubbly from the correct glasses, and that we must spend $30 a glass to do it the proper way. It’s called the Veritas glass from our friends at Reidel – with a wider middle and narrow top, two design changes that are supposed to help us enjoy more aromas and flavors. No, this isn’t as bizarre as the cement mixer glass from the previous post (which also needs to be dusty to work most efficiently), but it’s overkill nonetheless.

Most of us spend less than $15 a bottle for sparkling wine. Why do we need to pay twice as much for the glass? Why can’t we enjoy our bubbly in whatever glasses we have and be done with it?

Because this is wine, and if they aren’t telling us what to do, they’re reminding us that what we do is wrong. And, by the way, spend more money.

I wrote this in the previous Champagne glass post, and it’s worth repeating: “What difference does the design make to the vast majority of wine drinkers? Can we tell the difference between the bubbles in a flute glass and in the cement mixer glass? Isn’t the wine just as enjoyable in the former? The answers: Almost certainly not, and of course. And I can’t imagine most of us want to drink wine out of a dusty glass.”

But then again, what do we know? We’re just the slobs who pay for everything.

Calling all conspiracy buffs: The sparkling wine glass plot

sparkling wine glass

Do we really need a sparkling wine glass that looks like a cement mixer? Of course not

The Wine Curmudgeon is old enough to remember 1960s-style sparkling wine glasses, the bowl-shaped kind that were supposed to resemble Marie Antoinette’s breasts. Then the experts told us we needed to switch to the flute-shaped glasses in use today, so we did.

But over the past couple of years, that hasn’t been good enough for the experts. First, we were supposed to switch to traditional white wine glasses. Then Riedel, which never met a wine it couldn’t create a glass for, said we needed a sort of white wine glass designed for bubbly.

And now, as Felicity Carter reports in Wine Business International, we need a glass that looks like a cement mixer. And the glass needs to be dusty.

Enough already. This is only sparkling wine, not a cure for cancer. Can’t we just drink and enjoy?

Nevertheless, Carter reports that the experts say there is scientific evidence that the cement mixer glass, and especially if it’s dusty, produces more and better bubbles. And more and better bubbles mean more enjoyable wine.

Which is all well and good, save for one thing (which doesn’t include the cost of replacing your glasses). What difference does the design make to the vast majority of wine drinkers? Can we tell the difference between the bubbles in a flute glass and in the cement mixer glass? Isn’t the wine just as enjoyable in the former?

The answers: Almost certainly not, and of course. And I can’t imagine most of us want to drink wine out of a dusty glass.

I taste lots of sparkling wine, using flutes and white wine glasses, and it’s not the glass that matters. It’s the quality of the bubbly, and all the glass does is let me determine the quality. Crappy wine is crappy wine, regardless of what it is served in.

In other words, don’t spend more on the glass than the cost of the wine. If you drink $100 wine regularly, then by all means buy a $100 wine glass. But for the 99 percent of us who drink wine that costs $10 or less, a glass that costs about $10 is more than sufficient. And the one in the link is more difficult to break. Can the Champagne people say that about their glass?

 Photo courtesy of the Wine Business International, using a Creative Commons license

riedel

Thursday Birthday Week giveaway: Six Riedel wine glasses

riedelWin six Riedel wine glasses

And the winner is: DLB, who selected 45; the winning number was 42 (screen shot to the right).
Thanks to everyone who participated. Tomorrow’s giveaway and the last of birthday week: four autographed copies of the cheap wine book.


Today, to celebrate the blog’s 10th anniversary, we’re giving away six Riedel wine glasses — two Vinum sparkling glasses and four O red wine glassescourtesy of Banfi Wines. Thanks to Banfi, which has been a Birthday Week supporter many times over the years. This is the the fourth of five daily giveaways; check out this post to see the final prize.

Complete contest rules are here. Pick a number between 1 and 1,000 and leave it in the comment section of this post. You can’t pick a number someone else has picked, and you need to leave your guess in the comments section of this post — no email entries or entries on other posts. Unless the number is in the comments section of this post, the entry won’t count.

If you get the blog via email or RSS, you need to go to this exact post on the website to enter (click the link to get there). At about 5 p.m. central today, I’ll go to random.org and generate the winning number. The person whose entry is closest to that number gets the glasses.

2,500 posts and free wine glasses

free wine glassesLast week, between preparing for my El Centro class, working on a couple of free-lance pieces, and overseeing the Wine Curmudgeon empire’s day-to-day operations, I didn’t notice that the blog ran its 2,500th post. Which, if it doesn’t make me Ty Cobb, puts me in Hall of Fame company. And since I believe in rewarding the people who have kept this thing going for 2,500 posts — you, the readers and visitors — it’s time for free wine glasses.

Yes, a wine glass giveaway — four Lori Dennis Home Unbreakable Wine Glasses, stemless and made with premium acrylic to work like glass. That means they won’t shatter, stain, or or dull; they’re heavy in the hand like glass; shatterproof, because they’re plastic; and easy to clean (top shelf dishwasher safe). Plus, says Dennis, a portion of the proceeds from every sale benefits Habitat for Humanity.

The usual contest rules apply. That means pick a number between 1 and 1,000 and leave it in the comment section of this post to wine the free wine glasses. You can ?t pick a number someone else has picked, and you need to leave your guess in the comments section of this post ? no email entries or entries on other posts. Unless the number is in the comments section of this post, the entry won ?t count.

If you get the blog via email or RSS, you need to go to this exact post on the website to enter (click this link to get there). At about 5 p.m. central today, I ?ll go to random.org and generate the winning number. The person whose entry is closest to that number gets the free wine glasses.

Finally, you’ll see several changes to the blog over the next week or so — updating its look, making it more mobile friendly, and faster loading times. The site should still be just as easy to use, but a little more 21st century in how it works. Many thanks to Kermit Woodall of Woodall Design for his patience and perseverance through this process, given all the hand holding he had to do.