A key part of the wine drinking experience is the quality of not only what’s in the glass, but the glass itself. Think about it- who wants to drink a big Cab out of a cheap plastic cup? Sure, it would hold the wine just fine and transport it from the bottle to your lips, but the enjoyment of the event would most definitely be diminished.

 

A few hundred years ago, in the Italian city of Verona, an osteria –a restaurant know for wine and simple food- opened. It went through many changes over the years and by the late 1800s that restaurant became known as Bottega del Vino. In 1986, passionate wine lover Severino Barzan purchased Bottega del Vino. He began to expand the wine cellar and soon turned his restaurant into one of Italy’s great destinations for wine lovers. Mr. Barzan next focused his attention on wine glasses. He wanted an option to lead crystal, which, while beautiful, traditionally had thick walls which made it heavy. If made thinner, lead crystal became extremely fragile- not an option in a restaurant. After researching and consulting with glass producers in the area, Mr. Barzan developed a new technique and in 1996, Bottega del Vino became the first company in the world to produce wineglasses using crystal made without lead. And, in true Old World craftsman style, each stem was mouth blown and hand finished.

 

These new wine glasses were durable enough for restaurant use, yet still beautiful and with that all-important hand-feel. Customers, enamored with this new glassware, began to ask for examples to take home. Realizing there was a need in the wine community for this type of glassware, Bottega del Vino soon began to make their now-famous glasses available to customers all over the world.

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Bottega’s del Vino’s red wine glasses are specifically designed to bring out the best in each type of wine. The Rosso Giovane is perfect for young wines like Beaujolais Nouveau or basic Chiantis, while the Rosso Amarone suits medium bodies wines like Shiraz and Merlot. Want to present big reds like Bordeaux, Pinot Noir, and Barolo in style? The 35 oz. Rosso Burgunder is perfect for the occasion. Bottega del Vino didn’t forget the white wines, either, with its all-purpose Chardonnay glass. And, of course, what better way to finish off a wine dinner than with a glass of port or sherry served in Bottega del Vino’s Porto glass?

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And while we’ve been talking about the virtues of crystal glassware in relation to wine, the same principals apply to other beverages. Johnson’s Whisky Tot from Bottega del Vino was created for those who enjoy sipping a nice single malt Scotch. Featuring two hand-cut measuring marks (1 oz. and 5 oz.) and designed to fit the hand perfectly, these glasses make the perfect addition to any home bar.

 

We appreciate that the ubiquitous red Solo cup has its role in the beverage world but when it comes to wine, it’s worth splurging on quality glassware. Still not sure? Do a comparison sometime. We know you’ll be surprised!