Wine & Water Goblet Differences

By Jim Walrod

Goblets have three parts. There's the mouth, the bowl and the stem. The shape of the first two determines the purpose. You can drink wine and water from any goblet, but matching the glass to the purpose adds to the enjoyment.

Glasses on dinner tablet
credit: tommaso79/iStock/Getty Images
Empty water and wine glasses on an outdoor table.

Water Goblet

Dinner table set
credit: ana-p/iStock/Getty Images
Water goblets are set on a restaurant table.

With a wide mouth and deep belly, the water goblet is thicker. Its more substantial stem stands out in a setting of wine glasses.

Red Wine Glass

Bartender pouring wine into glass
credit: Siri Stafford/Digital Vision/Getty Images
A bartender pours two glasses of red wine at the bar.

Where a water goblet has a closer mouth and no belly, the red wine goblet shows a large open mouth and deep bowl. These glasses are designed to highlight the aroma--also called the nose--of these wines.

White Wine Glass

dinner on terrace in cafe
credit: Maria Timofeeva/iStock/Getty Images
A glass of white wine on the veranda of a hotel.

The water goblet with a more utilitarian shape contrasts strongly with the white wine glass which was developed for the lighter wines. These wines have a less intense nose, and their glasses have smaller mouths and bowls.

Champagne Flute

Young man holding a champagne
credit: Top Photo Corporation/Top Photo Group/Getty Images
A man holds a flute of champagne at a formal event.

The water goblet appears squat and pedestrian next to the flute which is designed to show off the effervescent qualities of champagne.The flute is the tallest and narrowest of wine glasses

Dessert Wine Glass

Sherry for Christmas feast
credit: Zoonar/S.Heap/Zoonar/Getty Images
A glass of dessert wine on a holiday table.

The water goblet towers over these specialty dessert wine glasses; they're distinctive for their much smaller bowl and wide mouths. They are used in the serving of heavier wines such as ice wines, sherries and ports.