Baccarat Plans to Revolutionize Wine Drinking with New Glasses

Sold only in France and Hong Kong, the tulip-shaped glasses will change wine tasting

The new Baccarat stemware design.

Could a tulip change the way we drink wine? According to luxury glass designer Baccarat, it could: The newest line of Baccarat glasses, sold in France and Hong Kong, are shaped like the flower to enhance the wine tasting experience.

Reuters explains that the new glassware has a broader base, with a tulip-shaped bowl and a narrow lip at the end of the "vertical chimney." The glass looks similar to the "tastevins" used by sommeliers and wine experts to taste wines, which look like a saucer. The reason for the design changes? To prevent the alcohol of the wine from overpowering the other aromas. The classic swirl move usually oxidizes the wine and burns off floral bouquets usually missed. Said the technical advisor to Reuters, "The main subject in the final stretch should no longer be the alcohol anymore, but the aromas and the bouquet the fine wines have to offer."

The French glassmaker said achieving the balance between the floral bouquets and alcohol is necessary to tasting wine. Said one Baccarat manager, "It's just like a balance between fire and water, the glass balances the fire that comes from the alcohol and the aroma in the water component." The glasses are sold in France, but were recently added to Chinese markets to target luxury drinkers. (After all, they cost $118.)