Not all wine glasses are created equal. Whether you prefer white wine, red wine or a sparkling varietal, you’re going to want a vessel specifically designed for your vino of choice. And if you’re a red wine person, then you’ll likely want a balloon glass to drink it from.
Balloon glasses are ideal for reds because they have an especially large, almost balloon-shaped bowl. While the large bowl may seem like it’s just for large pours (or looks), its actual purpose is to let your wine breathe. It exposes more of the wine to the air, allowing the ethanol to evaporate and the tannins to soften. This accentuates the wine’s aroma and smooths its taste, making for a more satisfying sip. Chances are, you’ll also want a glass with a long stem so that your hand doesn’t affect the wine’s temperature.
In other words, if you love red wine, then you’re going to want to invest in a set of balloon glasses. Here are four of the best on Amazon.
1. Elixir Glassware Long-Stem Wine Glass Set
If you’re familiar with balloon glasses, then Elixir Glassware’s probably look exactly like what you’re envisioning. The brand’s gorgeous vessels have a large, 22-ounce bowl and an extra-long stem to really bring out the aroma of your favorite vintage. Each of the four glasses in the set is hand-blown, made from lead-free crystal and is durable enough to withstand frequent usage. Despite this, the brand still recommends that you wash each glass by hand, just to be safe.
2. RÖD Wine Titanium Wine Glass Set
Anyone who’s suffered the misfortune of dropping a wine glass while washing them by hand knows they’re far from sturdy. But while RÖD Wine’s glasses won’t be able to withstand major drops, they can survive being knocked over. That’s because each glass in the brand’s set of three is made from titanium crystal. They’re also dishwasher-safe, which means you won’t have to worry about breaking them in the sink while washing.
3. Lenox Tuscany Classics Beaujolais Wine Glass Set
If you have a bottle of your favorite red that you want to share with some friends, then Lenox has the balloon glasses you’re looking for. The brand’s set comes with not two, not three, but four glasses. But this isn’t a case of quality over quantity, as Lenox makes a mighty fine vessel as well. Each Beaujolais glass has a large—but not too large—bowl and a long stem that are both break resistant. Despite this, you’ll still want to wash them by hand, as they’re made from lead crystal.
4. Waterford Classic Lismore Balloon Wine Glass
Waterford balloon glasses are perfect for those who want to invest in something a little fancy. While they’re far from the largest glasses on this list, they make up for it with their truly breathtaking design. The bowl on the brand’s vessels is more spherical than other balloon glasses and features the brand’s trademark diamond pattern carved into it. One thing to remember is that you’ll probably want to wash these crystal glasses by hand.