Drinking Culture in a Glass

It is hard to know as a consumer whether the many new shapes of glasses that appear regularly for different types of alcoholic beverage are really necessary, or sales-driven. Certainly, the most prominent of all drinks to devise special shapes is western-style wine. If you attend a formal dinner anywhere in the world, the grander it is, the more glassware. Today’s top-end restaurants and bars distinguish wine type within white, rosé and red.

Specially Designed for Appreciation

Champagne glasses used to be very wide until the end of the 1970s when it was deemed that the flute-shaped glasses seen today best preserve and show off the streams of bubbles and adequately allow the aroma to travel to the nose of the drinker, while sipping.


Why then, are many spirits glasses straight, rather than round and bulbous, which is believed to accentuate the bouquet or the ‘nose’ as it is called of a drink? And do shot glasses miss the opportunity to deliver more of an intense nose to the drinker?


The argument for glass shape differences is that alcoholic drinks can vary in their appreciation. A wine glass opening should allow the drinker’s nose fit into it, as the aromatic quality of wine is considered essential to the experience. Less so for stronger spirits, where aroma contains concentrated alcohol fumes.


Glass shape is crucial in wine or beverage tasting. Depending on the alcohol strength, fruit component and structure, different shapes are appropriate. For instance, for a pinot noir wine which is very fruity, a large glass will enhance the fruit and volume of the wine.


Spirits such as Cognac or Armagnac – mostly aged in barrels – need bigger glasses or a wine glass so the oak aromas can express themselves. Gin, vodka, no-oaked grappa and others can be served in smaller glasses.

Moutai best tastes in tulip-shaped glasses to concentrate the aromas, the strength of Moutai can be expressed in a small glass. It is full of layers, mellow, and has a long taste. It will make people fall in love after drinking it.


Some alcohol is enjoyed from metal or ceramic cups – the latter is very much a part of Japanese sake culture; and Germany sometimes uses ceramic tankards – mug-shaped vessels for lager beer, as France does for apple cider. Ceramic does not give any particular taste. However, metal can give a very acidic taste to wines and to a few spirits. There are reasons why certain glasses or cups made with different materials in different shapes, are used to serve certain alcoholic beverages. But anyway, no matter how good the liquor is, drinking too much will be harmful to the body. Drinking Moutai in a small wine glass is just right.


Source Reference: Issue 2 of Moutai Magazine - International Edition