The 11 Best Wine Glasses for Every Occasion, According to Experts
If you've taken the time to carefully choose the right wines, make sure you're storing the bottles correctly, and pair them with your favorite foods, then the only thing left to do is find the best wine glasses to pour them into. Not only do glasses vary in appearance (some are more minimalist, while others are clearly statement pieces), but they also help round out your entire wine-drinking experience.
Since there are so many different wine glasses on the market, we talked to the experts to find out exactly what features to look for—and whether you really need separate glasses for reds and whites.
"Aromas play a pivotal role in the wine you're drinking, so choosing the right glass to get the most of the wine is an important step," says Joel Gott, founder of Joel Gott Wines. "At a basic level, reds usually have a wide top bowl and whites a narrower top bowl. After that, a variety of intricacies of the wine come into play, including thickness of the glass, curve of the bowl, [and] stem of the glass."
If you typically go for full-bodied red wines (which benefit from the air exposure of wider bowls), Gott recommends filling "your cabinet with a traditional long-stem red wine glass, since these wines tend to have more tannins." On the other hand, he says fans of white wine should go for a narrower bowl (like a Chardonnay wine glass) "to avoid losing any of the flavor details of the wine."
It makes sense to buy red- or white-specific glasses if you always stock your wine fridge with the same type of wine. But for something more versatile, experts recommend stocking up on multipurpose wine glasses that work well with reds and whites.
"Universal and all-purpose wine glasses are a great choice if you are new to drinking wine, don't have the space in your home or apartment to store separate glasses, or are just looking to save money in that department," Gott says. "While drinking out of a specific glass for each type of wine can bring out the best experience and flavor in each, it is by no means necessary. You should choose a glass that makes wine taste great for you."
But it can be hard to tell the difference between all those types of glasses when you're scrolling through Amazon, especially if you don't know exactly what you're looking for. To help you out, we dug through thousands of customer reviews (with those expert tips in mind) to find the best wine glasses you can buy online.
These are the best wine glasses to buy in 2021:
- Best Rated: Schott Zwiesel Pure Collection All-Purpose Wine Glasses
- Best Value: Libbey Vineyard Reserve 12-Piece Wine Glass Set
- Best for Reds: Riedel Ouverture Red Wine Glasses
- Best for Whites: Riedel Veritas Collection Wine Glasses
- Best Stemless: Riedel O Wine Tumbler
- Most Versatile: The One Wine Glass by Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson
- Best Crystal: Waterford Lismore Essence Goblet
- Best for Champagne: Riedel Performance Champagne Glass
- Best Expert Pick: Jancis Robinson The Perfect Wine Glass
- Best Splurge: Zalto Denk'Art Burgundy Wine Glass
- Best Insulated: Host Cooling Cups
One more thing to keep in mind: When shopping for wine glasses, you might find some labeled as glass and others as crystal and wonder what the difference is. Even though seeing something labeled as crystal glass used to mean it was made with lead, nowadays many brands offer lead-free crystal wine glasses. But the truth is that the main difference between crystal and glass is cost, according to our Executive Wine Editor, Ray Isle. "It doesn't matter in terms of tasting," he says.
Keep reading to learn more about the best wine glasses from top-rated and expert-approved brands like Schott Zwiesel, Riedel, and Zalto.
Best Rated: Schott Zwiesel Pure Collection All-Purpose Wine Glasses
With an average of 4.8 stars from over 2,400 ratings, these all-purpose wine glasses from Schott Zwiesel are clearly a popular choice on Amazon for both reds and whites. They're made with lead-free crystal glass and are dishwasher-safe, which makes them great for everyday use. "These are by far my favorite wine glasses that I've ever had," wrote one customer. "They're stylish and lightweight, while still being sturdy and strong. I love that the Tritan glass helps to prevent chips and breaks, which makes me hopeful that I'll have these for years to come."
To buy: $28 for two at amazon.com
Best Value: Libbey Vineyard Reserve Wine Glass Set
If you're looking for the most budget-friendly option, order this set of 12 wine glasses from Libbey, a brand that Isle describes as a "major producer of restaurant glassware." It comes with six glasses that work for various white wines and six glasses designed for various reds. At less than $4 each, this affordable wine glass set is an incredibly great value, whether for stocking your first apartment or hosting a wine-tasting party. "They are inexpensive, but don't have a cheap appearance," said a shopper.
To buy: $40 for 12 at amazon.com
Best for Reds: Ouverture Red Wine Glasses
While the Zalto wine glass above is more of a statement piece, these red wine glasses from Riedel's Ouverture Collection are best suited for everyday use. They work well with a wide range of red wines, and they're compact enough to fit in dishwashers, cabinets, and hanging racks. They hold just about 12 ounces (one customer appreciates that this prevents them from over-pouring), but if you prefer an oversized red wine glass, opt for the 35-ounce Double Magnum version instead. "These are my favorite everyday wine glasses," a customer wrote. "I buy replacements from time to time because they are, after all, glass, and do occasionally break, but [they're] pretty darn sturdy for such a useful and elegantly made glass."
To buy: $32 for two at amazon.com
Best for Whites: Riedel Veritas Collection Wine Glasses
Universal wine glasses work perfectly fine for most white wines, but if you always lean toward a specific type, opt for one of Riedel's varietal-specific wine glasses. The collection is complete with high-quality glasses designed to accentuate the flavors of oaked Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, and more—there are even options for Champagne, beer, and a variety of reds. Each glass is so well-made and lightweight, one shopper says they feel "like a feather in the hand." Just keep in mind that the average person probably doesn't need to invest in so many types in order to enjoy their wine—Isle notes that there's no major need to have a different wine glass for every type of grape.
To buy: from $59 for two (originally $69) at amazon.com
Best Stemless: Riedel O Wine Tumbler
These stemless wine glasses by Riedel are a great alternative to traditional glasses, and they're one of Isle's top picks. Shoppers say they feel sturdy and still look elegant without stems (even if they simply have soda or water in them) and that they're easy to hold. "They are beautiful and fairly rugged, yet do not spill as easily as stemmed versions," wrote one reviewer. "What I like best about them is the thin and small profile—not heavy and thick like a lot of cheaper glasses."
To buy: $47 for four at amazon.com
Most Versatile: The One Wine Glass by Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson
Designed by master sommelier Andrea Robinson, The One wine glass is another expert-approved option that's praised for its versatility. "If I had to pick one glass for everything I would use Andrea Robinson's 'The One,'" says James Hall, winemaker at Patz & Hall. It's meant for all types of whites—there's also a slightly larger glass for reds—but Hall still calls it "the best glass [for] big tastings" because he says it works with both reds and whites. "This is what I use at parties when there many different wines and it's not practical to have multiple glasses," he adds.
To buy: $30 for two at amazon.com
Best Crystal: Waterford Lismore Essence Goblet
If you're looking for high-quality crystal, opt for Waterford's gorgeous wine glasses. "Waterford makes lovely crystal glasses, though they cost [a lot]," Isle says. Each glass has an elegant design featuring the brand's popular Lismore pattern that's been around since 1952. "These are absolutely beautiful glasses," said one customer. "I actually bought these for my daughter and then I liked them so much that I bought myself a pair. You won't be disappointed!"
Best for Champagne: Riedel Performance Champagne Glass
"The traditional 'flute' glasses you think of for champagne actually aren't the best options," says Ian Cauble, master sommelier and founder of SommSelect. He notes that flutes are "too thin to get the full aromatic experience," which can affect the overall taste. "For a very good stem that still reserves the nostalgia of the Champagne flute and is very durable, the evolved Riedel Champagne stem is an excellent choice," says Cauble. The glasses have more of an egg-shaped design compared to flutes, and customers describe them as "elegant, striking, and beautiful."
To buy: $45 for two (originally $69) at amazon.com
Best Expert Pick: Jancis Robinson The Perfect Wine Glass
These expert-recommended glasses were designed with the help of a wine critic to work with all different types of wines, which takes the guesswork out of choosing a glass. "I love the Jancis glasses. They are an example of the move towards 'universal' glasses," says Isle. They're made of mouth-blown crystal, and the brand actually recommends carefully placing them in the dishwasher after use, because hand-washing can add too much pressure. While they're on the pricier side (they come out to $56 each), "it's definitely more affordable than buying a different glass for every grape," Isle previously wrote.
Best Splurge: Zalto Denk'Art Burgundy Wine Glass
If you're willing to splurge on wine glasses (even if it's just a set of two for anniversaries or important events), opt for the hand-blown glasses by Zalto. "I use many kinds of glasses, but for special occasions, I love Zalto glasses," says Gott. "They are so thin and beautiful, and can make drinking a special bottle even more special." Although this glass in particular is designed for red wines above 13% alcohol content, like Bordeaux or Merlot, the brand also makes aesthetically pleasing white wine glasses. Hall uses that version for both Chardonnay and sparkling wines, calling it "a feat of glass-blowing art that is hard to fathom." Even though he says they're "surprisingly strong and durable," you'll want to handle them with extra care since they're still delicate and on the pricier side.
FYI: Most of Zalto's wine glasses are currently out of stock, so we recommend picking another option on this list if you need something soon.
To buy: $599 for six at amazon.com
Best Insulated: Host Cooling Cups
These top-rated insulated tumblers are the plastic wine glasses you never knew you needed. Before use, just place them upside down in the freezer for white and rosé wine (or the refrigerator for red wine), and the cooling gel lining will perfectly chill your drink. Shoppers call the glasses a "game-changer" because they no longer have to dilute their wine with ice cubes to keep it cold. "I tend to drink my wine a little slow. Before I finish it, my chilled wine is room temperature," one person wrote. "These cups are perfect. Even after an hour inside the house, the wine is still refreshing."
To buy: $23 for two (originally $27) at amazon.com