Whether it’s a Grappa di Amarone Forlago, or a Grappa di Amarone Bianca, all spirits need to be served in the right grappa glasses. As for wine glasses, also for spirits, the shape and size of the glasses is important to enhance aromas and flavors. There are different types of glass: tulip, tumbler, balloon and glencairn, suitable for enjoying different products. Knowing them and knowing how to combine them correctly with different liqueurs can make each product much more appreciated.
Liqueurs and distillates: a brief review
Before analyzing in detail the various types of grappa glasses, let’s remember the fundamental differences between liqueurs and distillates. Both belong to the category of spirits. The differences that distinguish one from the other are mainly found in the processing method, the presence of sugar and the alcohol content. In common, however, they need to be savored in specific glasses so that their bouquet of aromas and intense flavors can be properly enhanced.
The distillates are obtained through a distillation procedure of the fermented alcohol in an alembic still. For example, for whiskey or vodka it is the grains that are fermented. For gin, on the other hand, it is juniper, while for grappa the wine is the undisputed protagonist of the necessary processing.
Unlike their distilled cousins, liqueurs are prepared in three different ways: distillation of an alcoholic infusion, maceration or percolation. They are composed of alcohol, water, sugar and various flavorings (such as flowers, herbs and various seeds).
Glasses for grappa and distilled
Glasses for grappa, liqueurs and various disitlled differ according to the type of product to be consumed, the years of aging and the complexity of the aromas. Among the most common are:
- Ballon or Snifter – in glass, thin, wide and rounded bottom and wide opening.
- Glencairn – thick and solid bottom and narrow, thin opening, is suitable, especially for enjoying whiskeys
- Grappa glasses – they are small stemmed goblets, they are specially created to taste the national distillate. Grappa glasses are also great for drinking brandy or cognac. The base is rounded and the opening is narrow.
- Low Timbler – useful for serving fairly young spirits with or without ice.
- Tulipano – is the classic glass suitable for drinking red wine, as well as grappa, young rum, whiskey and barricaded grappa (therefore also ideal for Grappa di Amarone Barricata).
- Copita or goblet – of Spanish origin, resembles the tulip goblet and is used to serve and enjoy sherry or other types of fortified wine. The opening is thin and narrow, the base broad and solid and the stem very long.
- Shot – is a very small glass that can hold a maximum of 4 cl. The bottom and rim are thick and is used for vodka, gin and tequila.
How to drink grappa: the mistakes to avoid
Although it may seem strange, there is a correct way to drink grappa. First of all, as we have seen, it is necessary to choose the most suitable grappa glass for the product to be consumed. A common and trivial mistake that is often made by consumers of this distillate is to overdo the quantities. Grappa glasses must never be completely filled. The right amount is approximately half of the total capacity of the glass.
Another mistake to be absolutely avoided is that the service temperature is too low, or too hot. The ideal would be between 15 and 18 degrees for young and young aromatic grappas and around 20 degrees for those refined, aged and aged reserves. There is no “right” moment to enjoy a quality grappa, for example, it can be safely consumed at the end of a meal, or instead of a dessert, or as an accompaniment to many desserts.
During the tasting phase, it must be remembered that grappa is not a wine. Therefore, during the olfactory analysis, the nose must not be “plunged” into the grappa glasses. Finally, grappa is a distillate to be savored in small sips, without exaggerating. At first, the palate must get used to the high concentration of alcohols, after which it is good to always proceed by tasting small quantities at a time.