WINE BOTTLE TYPESNot all wine bottles are created the same. Their physical shape differs from one bottle to another based on the type of wine they carry. Some are long and thin, others are short and fat. There are 12 types of wine bottles. We will focus on 6 of them, and start with the Bordeaux bottle.
Straight and tall stature with high shoulders, this bottle is widely used for the wine we all conveniently reference to as Bordeaux. The glass is dark green for reds, and light green or clear for whites. The Bordeaux bottle is often used as a broad term for a wide variety of grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Semillon, Sauternes and most Meritage or Bordeaux blends. ">
Burgundy wine bottle
Classic, yet elegant, the Burgundy (Bourgogne) bottle features gently sloping shoulders and a slightly wider body than the rest. Both reds and whites use a dark green colored glass. This bottle is primarily used for Pinot Noir, Aligoté and Chardonnay. Just like Bordeaux, the Burgundy bottle is also used for wines produced in other regions of France, notably the Loire Valley. Due to its popularity, the Burgundy bottle is often stylized. Bottle designers make a bottle with a thicker glass and a fatter girth, frequently used to bottle Pinot Noir in the United States.
Rhône wine bottle
This bottle looks a lot like the Burgundy bottle, perhaps just a little thinner and taller. The neck is marginally longer, with more angular sloping shoulders. Rhône bottles are often embossed with a coat of arms below the neck. This style is used for Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah, and other grape varieties. Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Côtes-du-Rhône, two of the most popular wines of the Rhône region, proudly use this bottle, as well as “New World” Shiraz wines produced in other countries (Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States). Generally green colored glass, this shape is primarily used for reds, while whites and roses use clear glass.
This olive-green bottle represents joy and happiness, and gets invited to many parties and weddings around the world. Sturdy, yet graceful, this bottle’s design is originally based on technical necessities as opposed to style. Its thick glass, gentle sloping shoulders and deep punt are quite essential to avoid a big mess! Champagne is a carbonated or “sparkling” wine, and the pressure can get as high as 80 to 90 psi (3 times the pressure inside a typical tire). Back in the early days of making Champagne, bottles used to explode during transportation. Never mind the perilous aspect of the job, it was such a waste! Keeping all that pressure inside the bottle also requires a larger and reversed tapered cork. A third of the cork will remain outside of the bottle allowing for an easy grip while opening the. In addition of being a technical necessity, the punt is also used by the sommelier to help pour the wine, providing a grip for the thumb at the bottom of the bottle.
Mosel & Alsace wine bottle
These elegant bottles are tall and slim with a long neck, and generally made of a light green glass. Traditionally, wines from the Mosel (Germany) and Alsace (France) regions use it. It is used by wineries for several grape varieties including Riesling and Müller-Thurgau. Their wines can vary from dry to sweet (even sparkling), while “New World” winemakers tend to use this bottle for sweet wines only. In either case, label knowledge is always advised.