Stemmed or Stemless

Updated: May 20


It’s nothing to do with grape vine stems, but everything to do with the stemless glass or the Stemmed glass for your wine consumption.

Now, if you are a wine lover, both you and I already know by now that in order to reach your wine’s full flavour potential whether red, white or rosé, the glass is everything. So please pull out your decanter, let that wine flow in and breathe before you finally allow it to grace your palate and fill your body mind and soul with nothing but the best experience ever.

On my most recent trip to a lot of places including a well-deserved NYC stop, our flight arrived earlier that usual and therefore we had to sit at this spot and have me a glass of red wine to calm my nerves down as we waited…..

“Can I please see your wine list,” I requested with so much enthusiasm. And to my enthusiasm, they had a Cabernet Sauvignon, one of my favourite grape varietals that comes with a grand personality like mine and sits well on my palate. So I waited patiently until her majesty ‘Cabernet Sauvignon’ arrived in a stemless glass.

“Whyyyyyyyyyy?” I thought to myself. I literally do not even know how to hold a stemless glass while savouring my red wine but here I was. It almost felt like my fingers were contaminating my wine every time I had to smudge my fingers all across it and take another sip.

I prefer my red wine in a goblet with a super long stem because the long stalk allows my wine to go in straight to the back of my mouth and then allow me to savour each and every flavor much easier, hence creating the full experience. However with the stemless glass, I kind of don’t know what to do. Great on a modern style glass with limited risk of breakage but what value does it add to my wine experience?

The Stem of the wine glass allows you to hold your wine glass without the heat from your hands warming your wine, and without creating smudges on the bowl, which will distract from the visual enjoyment of your wine.


As you indulge in your wine, it is important to also understand the Parts of a Wine Glass and what purpose they serve.

The Foot:

Allows your glass to stand upright.

The Stem:

Allows you to hold your wine glass without the heat from your hands warming your wine, and without creating smudges on the bowl.

The Bowl:

This shape helps to capture and distribute the wine's aroma toward your mouth and nose. The bowls of wine glasses are also designed to allow an amount of surface area appropriate to the wine.

Red wine glasses will have a larger amount of surface area for the wine to allow it to breathe.

White wine glasses will have a smaller amount of surface area. Champagne glasses will have a very small amount of surface area for the wine so that it retains its carbonation.

The Rim:

Imperative to achieving the full experience from your wines. The thinner the rim, the less the glass distracts from the wine as you sip.

The Color of the glass:

The best wine glasses are crystal clear to allow the beauty and subtleties of the wine to show through.

So, whatever your preference, Enjoy that wine while stocks last and share with me what’s so cool about your stemless vs stemmed glass experience.

Yours fabulously

Liz Ogumbo-Regisford

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