What glasses to use to serve champagne, wine, vodka or cognac?


Do you know which glasses are appropriate for red wine, which ones are good for white wine? Which glasses are right for cognac? Find out the proper rules for choosing glasses for alcohol.

The role of a glass

The type of glass we drink alcohol from, is determined by the drink and has a great significance, since each kind of drink requires a different kind of glass, to enhance its flavour and aroma.


Clear and specialised or flavoured vodkas can be served in a small glass with a stem, whilst small tumblers should only be used for the clear vodkas. The glass should be filled to between 3-5 mm below the rim.

Champagne and sparkling wines

Slender glasses that taper at the top should be used; these should be held by the stem so as not to warm up the champagne and then filled to 3/4 full.

White wines

These glasses should be colourless and made from very thin smooth glass, white wine glasses should have smaller bowls than those used for red and should only be filled half full.

Red wines

For red wine glasses with a large glass bowl which taper at the top and have a shorter stem, should be used. These can either be held by the bowl or the stem and should be filled 3/4 full.

Dessert wines and aperitifs

The glasses used should be similar only smaller to those used for red wine. The glasses are held by the stem and kept at room temperature and then filled half full.

Cognac and brandy

A glass with a large bulbous bowl should be used, which it should be held by, keeping it warm and is then partially filled with from 20-40 ml of alcohol


For whisky, glass tumblers with thick heavy bottoms are used. Such glasses can also be used for varied drinks, cocktails and any other alcohol that is poured out over ice cubes.


For liqueurs the glasses used are similar to the stemmed vodka glasses, except that they’re more slender. For drinking they’re held by the stem and filled half full.

Short drinks

The glasses used have widening bowls and quite short stems. They’re filled up to not more than half a centimetre from the brim.


Beer is often served at the table in a pilsner glass, which has a large slender bowl on a short sturdy stem. Also used are tall narrow glasses that widen towards the top.

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