Choosing the best glass for serving champagne
If you are about to open a prized bottle and want the tasting to be perfect, it is important to choose the right glass. Flutes, coupes, or wine glasses… find out which will fully express your champagne’s aromas.
Finding the perfect glass
When poured, your champagne will react to the shape of your chosen glass. The material itself—typically glass or crystal—has little impact on flavor and effervescence.
A good champagne glass should be tulip-shaped and tapered at the lip to ensure a more concentrated and developed bouquet of aromas.
A clear glass with a long, thin stem is ideal. This will prevent hands from warming the wine unnecessarily and the bubbles and color will be at their best.
Of the many different types of traditional and more modern glasses available, which best matches the champagne you will be serving?
Wine glasses, coupes or flutes: which glass is best?
Champagne flutes are no longer considered the best glasses for serving champagne. Although these glasses do help maintain a certain freshness, they are too narrow to allow the wine to fully express itself, and the bubbles appear too quickly under the nose, masking the aromas.
Up until the 1970s, champagne was traditionally served in coupes. These wide-rimmed glasses were often made from crystal and, according to legend, were based on the silhouette of the Marquise de Pompadour, the official chief mistress of Louis XV. Others claim the shape was inspired by Marie-Antoinette, Queen of France and wife of Louis XVI. However, there is one major drawback to the iconic coupe glass and its wide opening, as the effervescence disappears too quickly, taking with it the olfactory molecules that transport the champagne’s aromas.
So, what is the ideal glass for serving champagne?
Champagne is a wine that is above all perceived by the senses—by the eyes, the nose and then the palate—with the effervescence offering an additional dimension to the tasting. It may therefore be surprising to discover that in fact, white wine glasses are perfectly suited to the enjoyment of champagne.
Ideally, a good champagne glass should be tulip-shaped and tapered at the lip to ensure a more concentrated and developed bouquet of aromas.
The rounded base and narrow opening of a tulip-shaped wine glass make it a good alternative that allows the bubbles to form at just the right rhythm.
Mumm Champagnes—our vintage cuvées especially—should be given lots of space to express their aromas and flavors during a tasting. The bubbles aid this process, rising up the length of the glass, carrying aromatic compounds that are released when they burst on the surface. That is why it is essential to choose the best glass for tasting.