Flutes, Tulips, or Coupes
We’ve all seen them – the “fancy” champagne glasses in movies or on television. They’re short and wide, like someone took a champagne flute and smooshed it. Most people just head to their cabinet and dig out a few trusty (and possibly dusty) champagne flutes when they do decide to pop open the bubbly. Or they just pour it right into wine glasses (which may not be a bad idea depending on the type of bubbly, actually).
Why the Right Glass Matters
This may come as a surprise….but I do drink other wines besides sparkling! I love learning about the whole process of wine making, but clearly have a soft spot for all things bubbly. And bubbly truly is my favorite and my go to!
It’s my mission to make drinking bubbly as normal an event as opening a bottle of wine because it’s Monday and you’re going to sit down and watch the Bachelor. Or because you’ve had a long day.
Bubbly should not be saved for an occasion…everyday there’s a reason to pop the bubbly! (And if you haven’t downloaded our Reasons to Celebrate calendar yet, do it! You’ll never be without a reason to pop the bubbly again!)
But I digress.
But back to all things wine tasting.
If you have ever done a tasting and they switch out the glass for the specific type of wine, you probably experienced a different taste.
My first experience with this was when I lived in Oregon and we were tasting Pinot Noir. When you drink it out of a glass with a wider bowl and a bit of a lip, you will have a different experience then if you drink if from a glass designed for say white wine (smaller bowl without the lip).
The same holds true for bubbly. The taste is affected by the shape of the champagne glasses.
FUN FACT: There are approximate 1 million bubbles in each glass!
Champagne Glass Types
Let’s explore the different types of glasses.
Flutes are fun. Flutes are stylish and let’s face it, they make a great photo! They are tall and slender and certainly fun to clink…making any celebration official.
Flutes keep bubbles more taut, keeps them more present. The flute will definitely give your sparkling a bit of oomph with more bubbles that of course are rising to the top. Because of the narrow top, you won’t get as many aromatics as you do with wider mouth champagne glasses.
Tulips are elegant. The tulip is the perfect combo of a flute and a coupe: a narrow top like a flute and a wider bowl like a coupe.
This allows you to experience more of the aromatics and keep the bubbles. The wider bowl allows your bubbly to aerate and release the flavors and aromas and the narrow rim allows for the perfect amount of bubbles with every sip.
Coupes are the vintage and timeless champagne glasses. Just think: Great Gatsby
The coupe, also known as the saucer, allows the bubbles to disperse more quickly really allowing for you to experience both the flavor and aromas of the wine.
If you like your sparkling wine with a lot of bubbles and are drinking out of a coupe, you will need to drink it more quickly. Because of the wide mouth, your sparkling is exposed to oxygen which allows the bubbles to dissipate faster.
And as bonus, coupes double as cocktail and dessert glasses.
FAQ Champagne Glasses
When I did a glassware post on Instagram, I got so many questions!
- Where do I buy these?
- Can I try this at home with one bottle of bubbly?
- Will it really make a difference?
So let me answer your questions…
Will the glass really make a difference?
The short answer is yes! How drastic the difference will depend on the age and type of bottle, but you will taste one for sure. The long answer gets into sciency stuff that has to do with the smell and oxygenation. You can checkout the principles in this article that talks about how the shape affects smell.
Can I try this at home?
YES…you can totally do this at home. How fun would it be for a girl’s night in to do a taste testing party? Grab a bottle of your favorite bubbly and a few of each glass shape to test it out.
Where can I buy some?
I’ve rounded up a few of my favorites of each type of champagne glass to give you a head start on your shopping. Even better? Grab a few extra’s and personalize them as a party favor! Most department stores will have at least champagne flutes and often you can find tulips but honestly online ordering is the way to go to find all 3 different types in one stop.
So the bottom line, if you like your bubbly really bubbly, drink it out of a flute. But if you have an older bottle of bubbly, you may want to consider a coupe or tulip so it has some time to develop the flavor in the space it needs.
The tulip is a great champagne glass choice for the sparkling wine lover because it’s the best of both worlds really.
If you are looking for a fun themed glass for a party, and don’t mind your bubbly a little less bubbly, go with a coupe.