The Tasting Panel magazine

June 2015

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4  /  the tasting panel  /  june 2015 LETTER FROM THE EDITOR IN CHIEF Stemless . . . and Pointless I guess I really am a curmudgeon; I have to admit—as much as I have tried to like them—I truly loathe those stemless glasses. A decade ago they were foisted on unsuspecting and gullible (mainly younger, newer) wine drinkers. They were presented as a convenient, modern, "casual chic" way to drink wine. In fact, they really are a major step back in the evolution of glassware. We are expected to buy into the concept that this stemless glass is an advancement when, in fact, it is a return to the hollowed out gourd or coconut shell of pre-history. Stemware is a graceful and elegant way to drink wine. It is visually pleasing. It lifts and makes the wine more appealing to look at. It height- ens the enjoyment. These clumsy looking stemless glasses demean the wine within them. Whatever wine you put into this glass automatically looks like cheap plonk. From a practical point of view, it's also impossible to keep a wine at a fresh temperature in these glasses since you have to wrap your 98.6° hands around them in order to use them. This also leads to unsightly, grubby finger prints all over the glass. I'm not just a crotchety old guy unwilling to accept change; I have embraced all manner of new develop- ments: wine aerators, Coravin, CellarTracker, screw- caps, the 100-point scale, box wines, the Enomatic— you name it. But I draw the line at something that takes away from the basic enjoyment of wine. Everyone thought the stemless glasses were cute and clever when they first appeared, but frankly, they were just about as meaningful and lasting as hula hoops and pet rocks. Turns out they were really just a marketing ploy to separate wine drinkers from their hard-earned cash. —Anthony Dias Blue

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