Gabriel-Glas may not roll off the tongue the way Riedel does, but if you’re not familiar with this brand, you’re missing out on some exception glassware. The brand is the brainchild of Rene Gabriel, a former wine critic who developed this glass to be a uniform — yet ideal — glass for tastings. He spent two years developing the glass, which (unlike the Riedel approach) is designed to be ideal for any type of wine and is not varietal specific. In other words, it’s intended to be the perfect “all in one” wine glass.
That said, Gabriel-Glas has two different models, the StandArt and the Gold Edition. They look almost identical and both are made of lead-free crystal, but the StandArt glass is machine molded and the Gold Edition is mouth-blown. As such, the Gold is more delicate and elegant, particularly the stem, which seems almost impossibly thin.
I tried both glasses with a variety of wines and have to agree that they performed perfectly. The flattened base exposes the wine in the glass to the maximum amount of surface area, and the gently tapering sides effectively keep aromas trapped inside — and prevent the wine from sloshing out. They look beautiful, and while they’re on the large side, they aren’t nearly as big as some of Riedel’s monstrously huge goblets.
The only problem with these glasses is a perennial one: They seem awfully fragile and I have no doubt that using these for everyday drinking would result in them quickly being smashed by clumsy fingers. I will look forward to using the Gabriel-Glas stemware going forward, but what I really need is the perfect “everyday” wine glass… that I can put in the dishwasher.
StandArt: A / $31 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]
Gold Edition: A / $71 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]