We all love a glass of bubbly to add a touch of class to any occasion, but did you know that different types of Champagne glasses can make a difference to the fizz, flavour and aroma? The iconic coupe, the elegant flute and the classic tulip are all types of Champagne glassware that each brings their own unique style and a different drinking experience.
Table of Contents:
- The 3 types of Champagne glasses
- Champagne coupe vs flute
- Champagne flute vs tulip
- Does the type of Champagne glass impact the drinking experience?
- Champagne glass styles
- Can you drink Champagne in a regular wine glass?
- Which Champagne glass to choose?
- Top brands of Champagne glasses
- Where to buy Champagne glasses
- So, to summarise...
The 3 types of Champagne glasses
Coupe Champagne glass
Champagne coupes, also known as Champagne saucers, were the original Champagne glasses specifically designed for serving our favourite effervescent wine. They were popularised in England in the early 1800s and are one of the oldest styles of Champagne glassware.
The coupe is a Champagne glass with a broad, shallow bowl and a short, elegant stem. It’s this iconic round shape that is long rumoured to have been modelled on the breast of young 18th century French Queen, Marie-Antoinette.
Synonymous with style and opulence, the coupe’s shape lets you watch the bubbles joyfully dance around the glass. Although its design does mean that the fizz dissipates more easily, the popular aesthetic adds a touch of theatrics to your drinking experience.
When drinking from a coupe, it’s best to hold your glass either at the rim, or by pinching the top of the stem. This keeps the Champagne optimally cool, enhancing the overall taste and enjoyment of your sparkling wine.
Most popular coupe Champagne glasses at The Champagne Company:
- LSA Wine Collection Champagne saucers
- Waterford Lismore Essence Champagne saucers
- LSA Savoy Champagne saucers
Flute Champagne glass
Over the years, as sparkling wine became more popular and accessible outside of the elite upper classes, other styles of Champagne glasses soon evolved. By the 1920s, the traditional coupes had gone out of favour and were replaced by the slimmer Champagne flutes.
The flute’s signature tall and narrow shape is advantageous for better preserving the flavour and carbonation of the wine. The central indent at the bottom of the glass also acts as a congregating point for the bubbles and helps them float smoothly to the top.
Although all share a similar slender design, there are different variations of the flute. From traditional designs to more unusual Champagne flutes, here are some of the most common styles:
- The classic Champagne flute: The classic flute, like our Riedel Vinum glasses, have a long, tapered conical shape. This helps to retain the effervescence of the wine and concentrates the bubbles in the centre of the glass.
- The trumpet Champagne flute: A variation on the classic design, the trumpet glass curves outward making a trumpet shape at the opening. Its design concentrates the bubbles at the rim, preserving the delightfully fizzy texture. Take a look at our hand-crafted Waterford Elegance Crystal Trumpet Champagne flutes.
- The square Champagne flute: As the name suggests, these contemporary glasses have a squared-off design without the classic tapered opening. This creates a more even distribution of bubbles that fizz more quickly.
- The stemless Champagne flute: The more casual stemless glasses provide a modern twist on the classic flute. The conical shape retains the carbonation and aroma of the wine, but the removal of the stem means that the wine warms more quickly in your hand.
When drinking from a stemmed Champagne flute, it’s best to hold the glass by pinching the top of the stem between your thumb and forefinger. This stops you from warming the Champagne with your hands and keeps it nice and cold. With a stemless flute, you’ll have to hold the glass by the base, which provides for a more comfortable fit but also heats the wine.
Most popular Flute Champagne glasses at The Champagne Company:
Tulip Champagne glass
Following the success of the Champagne flute, tulip Champagne glasses became popular around the world in the 1930s. Tulip glasses, taking their name from the flower, have a long, narrow stem, and an elongated oval shape. They are similar in design to Champagne flutes but have a broader, rounder middle and a narrow top.
It’s this signature teardrop shape that traps the aromas inside the bowl and funnels them towards the drinker’s nose. The wider bowl also provides more room for the bubbles to aerate and dance around, but the narrow rim means they don’t easily escape.
Similarly to the flute and coupe, to keep the Champagne at the optimal temperature, it’s best to hold your tulip glass at the top of the stem or by the base to avoid warming the wine with your hands.
Most popular Tulip Champagne glasses at The Champagne Company:
- LSA Borough Champagne tulip glasses
- Riedel Performance Champagne flutes
- Riedel Extreme Rose Champagne glasses
Champagne coupe vs flute
The Champagne flute is a tall and slender glass, perfect for a celebratory clink, and brings elegance to any event. Its narrow design retains the wine’s fizz and aromas for longer and allows the bubbles to rise smoothly to the top.
Compared to the Champagne flute, the Champagne coupe is wider and shorter. This means you’ll get more delicious Champagne per glass, but you’ll also lose fizz more easily. There’s more space for the bubbles to move around and oxygen to interact with the wine, so the flavours and aromas develop over time.
Champagne flute vs tulip
Champagne flutes and tulips are both taller and slimmer than the coupe. The flute has straighter sides and a more streamlined design that tapers at the rim. This reduces the amount of oxygen that can get into the glass and helps it retain the Champagne’s carbonation and aroma.
In comparison, the tulip has a broader bowl in the middle and curves in towards the rim. This wider bowl allows aromas to build in the glass without losing too much fizz.
Does the type of Champagne glass impact the drinking experience?
Glassware is an important element to consider if you want to achieve an optimal Champagne drinking experience.
The coupe’s broader shape means it can hold more scrumptious wine than other glasses, and the flavours and aromas will develop over time. It’s perfect for building an eye-catching Champagne tower, serving sparkling cocktails or bringing a luxurious, theatrical edge.
The flute’s narrow design is perfect for retaining the bubbles and bouquet of your favourite Champagne. Its elegant, slender shape means you won’t have as much wine per glass as other designs, but the flute keeps Champagne cool and adds a touch of class.
The perfect compromise between the coupe and flute, the tulip offers a broader bowl in the middle that tapers in at the top. Aromas are released and the flavour develops in the wider bowl, while bubbles are retained too. The tulip is perfect for contemporary dining and casual social occasions.
Finally, the Champagne glass material impacts the drinking experience. Crystal outperforms glass in terms of transparency and brightness, so you may enjoy the Champagne’s colour more. Crystal can also be produced extremely thin while remaining durable. As there is less material interacting with your mouth, you may appreciate the wine's flavour more fully.
Champagne glass styles
As well as different designs, Champagne glasses also come in different styles. Coloured glasses bring a glamorous feel, while engraved glassware adds a personal touch. Vintage designs are perfect for traditionalists, whereas pearl glasses add a certain sparkle. So, whether classic or more unusual Champagne glasses are your taste, there are plenty of styles to choose from.
Can you drink Champagne in a regular wine glass?
It’s possible to enjoy drinking Champagne from a regular wine glass. A wine glass isn’t too dissimilar from a tulip glass, and the wide round bowl releases lovely Champagne aromas in a similar way. However, Champagne glasses have effervescent points on the bottom of the bowl which help gently release the bubbles to the surface and create the festive feel that comes with drinking fizz. If you opt for a wine glass, it’s best to serve Champagne in small quantities to retain the bubbly texture.
Which Champagne glass to choose?
- Use a coupe glass to bring a touch of theatrics to the party. It’s perfect for serving sparkling cocktails or building a show-stopping Champagne tower.
- Use a flute to bring class and elegance to any event. Whether an intimate dinner or a wedding celebration, the flute’s slender design keeps your wine perfectly bubbly and cool.
- Use a tulip glass as the perfect balance between the more flamboyant coupe and the elegant flute. It’s perfect for relaxed social occasions and contemporary dinner parties.
Top brands of Champagne glasses
With so many Champagne glasses to pick from, you might be wondering how to choose. Here are some of our top brands to help:
Beginning life in the swinging sixties, LSA International is a family-run brand known for its beautifully simple designs. Check out LSA’s sophisticated Champagne saucers, modern Borough Champagne tulips and contemporary Moya Champagne flutes.
Riedel is renowned worldwide for its modern glassware. This luxury glass company dates back to 1678 and is still family-owned to this day. Take a look at Riedel’s beautiful teardrop Performance Champagne flutes and specifically designed Rose Champagne glasses.
Where to buy Champagne glasses
At the Champagne Company, we offer a wide selection of high-quality Champagne glasses. Choose from:
So, to summarise…
Whether you like the aeration and opulence of the original coupe, the traditional elegance and fizziness of the flute, or the best of both worlds with the modern tulip, it’s important to pick the right glass to make the most of your Champagne drinking experience.
For more information on all things Champagne, take a look at our Champagne Guide.