There are plenty of things more annoying than drinking wine from a poor quality glass, but they are irrelevant here. This is a wine blog after all, not an insight into the traumas of modern life.
For me, the importance of good glass ware was brought into sharp focus on a trip to The Half Moon in Putney, to see one of my favourite live bands, Ezio. (Self indulgent youtube clip of Ezio music with my own photos below).
And then it came time to go into the gig. The wine was comforting, so I opted for a second glass. I was given a thick plastic wine "glass" to hold this incredible fruit bomb. And suddenly it was not £9.30 well spent at all. It was a stark reminder of why I now seldom drink wine when I'm in pubs and clubs - even the good stuff failed to deliver.
And so, I was drawn to consider my own glass collection. I've written here about aspects of wine service including Riedel glasses before, and while i don't use them "every time", they have become integral to my enjoyment of the finer wines.
Yet, most of mine came "free" as part of tastings. It was time to put my money where my mouth was. So as well as restocking my standard stemmed white tasting glasses, I indulged in some of the (not that new really) stemless O range, since it's true to say that we have recently suffered from the indignity of knocking over and smashing a glass or two...
In order to give the glasses their inaugural taste, I opted for a bottle that's lain on my wine rack for longer than it ought.
I'm the first to preach that good wine is to be enjoyed, and that a kitchen wine rack is no place to store good wine, so while a bottle like this could have kept a little longer, I was slightly fearful that it may have been a little tired.
My memory says I purchased it some years ago from The Wine Society for about £28. I can only find this vintage now for £66 a bottle at Hennings - so perhaps it was a little extravagant for a Tuesday night. But, you only live once. Younger vintages are more widely available and around half the price (check out my Amazon link below).
It was a wine to fall in love with. Stunning round velvety tannin felt incredible in the large glass. The "regular" white wine glass full was amazing, but we soon realised that we'd be making our second pours into the larger stemless glasses and caressing them gently as the wine deserved.
It's a full bodied, rich and indulgent wine, that felt fresh and young despite it's poor resting place for the previous several years. The acidity was still singing and the almost baked raspberry and boysenberry fruits flooded the mouth. The addition of Carignan and Petite Syrah make the wine more spicy than some overly jammy Zinfandels and add ageing potential too. This one packed a punch of vanilla and baking spice, as well as some hints of charcoal. It was the end of conversation. Our focus went onto the wine. Mr Purple Teeth could not be drawn to comment.
It was over too soon.
I'd love to hear what you enjoy drinking out of, and what you're drinking at the moment.