Champagne flutes are elegant and beautiful. With a long slender stem and tall narrow bowl they are undoubtedly attractive stemware – if you are into that sort of thing of course.
Order some Champagne at a restaurant and every nearby table will watch the bubbles delicately rising in your flutes and wonder what you are celebrating.
Eye catching and evocative they may be but flutes are frankly pants for tasting champagne.
Allegedly Dom Pérignon, a seventeenth century Benedictine monk before he became a luxury champagne brand, is thought to have adopted the flute for Champagne. Apparently this was so he could watch the steady stream of bubbles rising in the glass.
Flutes preserve carbonation in the Champagne as they have a narrow bowl and therefore little surface area exposed to the air.
However, the lack of surface area prevents the bouquet of the wine from coming through. And of course, it’s worth keeping in mind that Champagne is wine!
This must be what the Champagne coupe is for right? Sadly not.
Mythically modelled after Marie Antoinette’s left breast, the coupe looks a bit like a soup bowl precariously perched on a candle stick. In fact, it was actually designed in 1663 in England of all places predating Marie by a century.
The flute might be poor for bouquet but at least it concentrates the carbonation. The coupe does neither so unless you fancy making a Champagne tower or you are drinking a particularly gassy Champagne then it’s a poor way to experience your wine.
What should you use then? A white wine glass of course! Champagne is often partly or mostly Chardonnay so a white wine glass is most appropriate.
The best way to get the bouquet and the flavour is to treat it as a wine and drink it accordingly.
If you’ve got a favourite way of getting the best out of your Champagne get in touch and let us know!