Wine Tips & Tricks

How to Hold a Wine Glass Civilized

In case you’re curious, here’s how to hold a wine glass with the utmost social etiquette. Your grandmother will be happy.

How to Hold a Wine Glass

Hold all stemmed wine glasses (red, white, etc) towards the base of the stem between your thumb, forefinger and middle finger. You’ll find that your other fingers will just rest on the base naturally. Don’t worry, it’s totally socially acceptable to swirl your wine.

Seriously This Matters?

Proper etiquette has become a secret handshake to high society. Which way is okay?
The truth is you can hold a wine glass any way you like. We figure, as long as you’re actively tasting wine, it really doesn’t matter what you do. Despite this fact, some social situations can’t be taken lightly. Perhaps you’re at a classy event or someone is about to snap your mug on instagram… either way,

“the last thing you should be worried about is being judged by how you hold a glass.”

Unfortunately we live in a world where little things like this count. So instead of fighting it, arm yourself with a few civilized ways to hold a wine glass. Pull off the look of a wine connoisseur and you might just become one.

Why Do You Hold a Wine Glass at the Stem?

As much as this seems like a really silly thing to do, there are a couple of reasons why holding a glass by the stem has become the standard:

  • Social Appearance: No greasy hand prints on the bowl
  • Temperature: Wine stays cooler longer.

Ways to Hold a Wine Glass That Pass the Social Etiquette Test:

What if I Use Stemless Glasses?

You can treat holding and drinking out of stemless glasses just like normal drinking glasses and hold it towards the base.

O.C.D. TIP: Drink from the same spot. It keeps the glass from making your wine smell funny and it looks clean.

Get The Book

Hands down, the best beginner book about wine. International bestseller. By the creators of Wine Folly’s award-winning site.

See Book

About Madeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly

Get Our Free Wine 101 Guide!

Get Our Free Wine 101 Guide!