Washing Wine Glasses: From a Chore to an Art Form
Written by Jennifer Jordan
Filed Under: Wine Glasses
No one is particularly fond of washing dishes, with many people reserving it for times when the tower of dirty dishes in the kitchen sink begins to resemble the Tower of Pisa. But, for those who have a collection of wine glasses, particularly crystal wine glasses, washing dishes correctly becomes essential in preserving the glasses ability to fully do their job.
Non-Crystal Wine Glasses
Non-crystal wine glasses are not as high maintenance as crystal wine glasses, but they still require a certain know how, knowledge on what to do for everything from using dish soap to removing a rabid wine stain that, no matter how much you yourself whine, will not come out.
Just Add Water: A simple method in wine glasses is to just add water. Rinsing the wine glasses three or four times in hot water should be enough to remove all residual wine. And, placing the wine glasses upside down on a clean cloth, when finished, will help the wine glasses in their quest to air dry.
A Touch of Soap: Adding just a drop of soap can help remove a wine glass with a stubborn wine residue. The soap used should be very mild, and the cloth used for scrubbing should be soft and sponge-like. Be sure you rinse all the soap from the glass; if the tiniest amount remains, you may find that your next glass of Merlot is as sudsy as a bottle of beer.
Use the Dishwasher: While it may seem like the modern day dishwasher is a place where wine glasses go to die, those that are not made of crystal and do not possess long stems can actually be washed in this manner. But, if you wash wine glasses in technology, don't use very much detergent and don't allow the dishes to be dried by heat; as soon as the dishwasher is finished rinsing, remove the wineglasses and dry them by hand.
Crystal Wine Glasses
Crystal Wine Glasses are definitely the most elegant of glasses and they know it, standing tall and acting as if they are the Holy Grail. Because of this, they require a lot of tender loving care and they need more attention than other types of dinnerware. If they don't receive it, they will likely rebel, forfeiting their ability to enhance the taste of wine, ruining it in the process.
Crystal is porous and can absorb flavors - particularly soapy flavors - with relative ease. If this absorption happens, you might have a clean wine glass, but you will also have a wine glass that alters the flavor of your wine, adding in a dollop of detergent.
Use Washing Soda: Washing soda - and baking soda works too, but not as well - is a type of cleaning soda that is designed for use on glass in a gentle, but complete, manner. It is made to be a cleaner that won't be absorbed by crystal. Most grocery stores sell it in the detergent aisle.
Use the Force of Lukewarm Water: Like non-crystal wine glasses, crystal wine glasses can be washed simply with water. Making sure the water is lukewarm in temperature, rinse the wine glass repeatedly. If the wine won't come out, add just a drop of very mild detergent and gently wash with a soft cloth. Never use a steel or a wool pad, your crystal wine glasses will never speak to you again.
Don't Use the Dishwasher: While the Maytag man would probably assert that dishwashers are safe enough for crystal wineglasses, the truth of the matter is the dishwasher can ruin the wine glass one of two ways. While one of these ways simply involves placing your wine glass in the dishwasher, allowing it to run, and then opening it up only to find that your one crystal wine glass is now several pieces of crystal wine glass, the other way a dishwasher can ruin it is by allowing detergent to bake into the crystal. This baking causes the wine glass to cloud, ruining it and refuting the old "crystal clear" saying.
Place Over Boiling Water: The experts at the Riedel Wine Glass Company suggest that to make your crystal wine glass really shine, hold the glass over a pot of boiling water, allowing the steam to cover it. Once this "steam bath" is finished, simply dry the wine glasses with a linen towel.
Taking care of dinnerware can be no fun: the easily aggravated wine drinker may simply refuse to give their dinnerware proper care, telling their wine collection to kiss their glass. But, taking proper care of wine glasses is elemental in making sure the wine glasses hold their ability to add to wine's elegance, never losing their edge and beating a regular old cup by a stem.