When you are in social situations where wine is being shared, there is a certain etiquette that should be followed when it comes to holding your wine glass. While it might be easy to scoff at the notion that how one holds their glass of wine matters, the truth is wine is one of the world’s oldest and most cherished drinks, so it deserves more respect than a glass of soda. And how you hold your glass is one way to do this.
But perhaps even more importantly, how you hold your glass of wine is a representation of your sophistication and wine acumen. And who knows who might snap your photo and post it to their Instagram account? Luckily, there are a few ways to properly hold a wine glass, so choosing one that works for you shouldn’t be a problem.
Ready to learn how to hold a wine glass like a true wine connoisseur?
Ways to Hold a Wine Glass
Wine can be enjoyed using just about any drinking vessel, but the most common way to serve it is in a stemmed wine glass. When using a stemmed wine glass, hold the base of the stem between your thumb, forefinger, and middle finger. Your remaining fingers can rest on the base.
There are a couple of different reasons why this technique is preferred. For starters, in social situations where elegance is called for, holding the wine glass this way prevents the glass from becoming covered in fingerprints. Another reason is because holding the glass by the stem helps keep the wine cooler longer. Should you hold the glass by the bowl, your body temperature will cause the wine to get warmer quicker, and this can affect its taste and finish.
Other socially acceptable ways to hold a wine glass include:
- Holding the stem with just the thumb and forefinger with the remaining fingers resting on the base
- Pinching the stem between the second joint in the forefinger and the thumb
- Pinching the stem where it meets the base with the forefinger and thumb with the remaining fingers adding stability along the underside of the base
- Holding the base with the thumb along the top of the base and the forefinger along the underside of the base
How to Hold a Red Wine Glass
Because red wine is often served at room temperature, you’re granted a little more flexibility in how you hold your red wine glass because you don’t have to worry about your body temperature affecting the taste of the wine as much. For this reason, red wine is also commonly served in stemless glasses.
So, to hold a stemless glass of red wine properly, you will want to hold it just as you would a normal drinking glass, but with your fingers closer to the base of the glass.
How to Hold a White Wine Glass
White wine is almost always served chilled, so to savor the taste of your white wine longer, you need to keep your fingers away from the bowl of the glass. Therefore, how you hold a glass of white wine matters. For the best results, white wine should be served in a stemmed glass, and you should hold the glass using one of the techniques mentioned above.
In the real world and among your friends, you can enjoy a glass of wine without worrying about how you’re holding the glass. But when you’re out in public, little things like this matter and we live in a time where people are judged harshly for a lot less. So, practice the above techniques for holding a wine glass and the next time you attend a posh event or a dinner at a fine restaurant, you’ll look like you’re right at home.