Whether you’re drinking wine, beer or a cocktails, there always seems to be the perfect piece of glassware for your beverage of choice. But now that cocktails that utilize wine and beer as an ingredient are in fashion, the lines get blurred as per what type of glass will best highlight the flavors.
“With hybrid cocktails that are combining multiple styles of spirits, the glassware should match and enhance the majority ingredient in the cocktail. There is no golden rule for these hybrid styles, so a breakdown of ingredients and how they are enhanced within a vessel would likely be the best bet,” says Anne Koziara, vp/On-Premise, Riedel – Nachtmann.
Koziara explains that there are varying cocktail glass shapes for style reasons, but also because different styles enhance the different pours and serving styles in mixology. Glasses are also designed to deliver foam, fizz and ice certain parts of the palate. To this, she notes that where cocktail glasses leave that a sip on your palate is important in how you perceive the tastes associated with the beverage.
However, she says, it important to look as the basis of the cocktail to figure out what type of glassware would enhance the sipping experience. For a cocktail that is based in white wine, a wine glass with a smaller bowl and tapered rim would likely be best, as this shape allows for fruit-forward flavors of white wines to be more apparent on the nose and palate, says Koziara. Cider-based cocktails, too, should be sipped from a tulip-shaped white wine glass for the best flavor notes.
If a red wine is the basis for a cocktail, Koziara says that a larger-bowled red wine glass, ideally paired to the type of wine being used to create the sangria or cocktail, would be best.
“If a Cabernet is being used, use a Cabernet glass to enhance the aromas and flavors of that wine in conjunction with the other flavors. When referencing a sangria specifically, there are often pieces of fruit in the concoction and a larger bowl would allow for those garnishes to be served in the glass,” she says.
Beer-based cocktails get a little more complicated, explains Koziara. While there is specific glassware for different types of beers, it may actually suit the mixed drink to be sipped from a cocktail glass instead. Both light and dark beers will be innately fizzy from the carbonation in beer, and the glassware of choice should be able to enhance the prolong that.
“I’d recommend a highball glass for a both. You wouldn’t want a larger bowl for a beer cocktail as it would give the beverage too much surface area and would likely go flat rather quickly,” she says.