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Choosing the right wine glass is essential for the development of the bouquet and the effervescence – so too is the cleanliness of the glass.
Champagne is best enjoyed in a tulip glass, tall enough to allow the bubbles and aromas to develop to the full.
Always rinse Champagne glasses with hot water before use, and leave to drain. This will remove any detergent or ‘rinse aid’ residue that can cause the bubbles to go flat. Many times, a disappointing show of effervescence is the fault of the glass and not the Champagne.
As anyone with any experience will tell you, the shallow dish shape known as a ‘coupe’ simply doesn’t work for Champagne. The fact that it’s also known as a ‘Champagne saucer’ says it all. The bowl of the glass is too shallow to contain the effervescence, never mind allow it to develop properly – the same goes for the aromas. What usually happens is that the wine froths up and spills over, making the glass even less stable than it already is.
Despite all that, the word ‘coupe’ forms part of the French Champagne vocabulary – being the common term for any single glass of wine, whether sold in a bar or served to a friend.