TYPES OF BOTTLES: MARKING THE DIFFERENCE
DEFINITION OF BOTTLE
According to the Real Academia de la Lengua Española, it is called a “glass vessel, cooked clay or other material, with a narrow neck, which serves to contain liquids”
The origin of this term is coined in ancient Rome from the Latin word “ampulla“.
The glass bottles as we know them in the present did not begin to be used until the 17th century. Until then, the wine was stored and transported in different formats and containers of very diverse materials such as clay (amphorae), animal skins and wood.
But let’s not just think that the bottle is just a container. Its protection function influences the correct evolution of the wine so that it reaches its optimum consumption moment.
PARTS OF A BOTTLE
The bottle has several parts:
- Mouth or Crown: its upper opening.
- Neck: narrowest part of the bottle.
- Shoulders: curve in the upper area of the bottle. They can be more or less high, more or less pronounced depending on the style of the bottle.
- Body: Longest area of the bottle in which almost all its contents are housed
- Bottom or Push-up: concave part of the bottom of the bottle. It will be more or less profound.
TYPES OF BOTTLES
There are many types of bottles. The vast majority respond to the style of wine or production area that gives them origin.
The most common types of bottles are:
- Bordeaux: we could consider it one of the most classic bottles and quite used. Its name is linked to the French region of Bordeaux that gave rise to it. It is used indiscriminately for white and red wine. Its shape is cylindrical, with marked shoulders and a concave bottom
- Rhine: this German wine area gives its name to this bottle because of its use in the wines of this region. It is used in certain white and rosé wines. It appears elongated, tall and very stylized. His shoulders are almost non-existent, merging with a long neck.
- Burgundy: it is considered the oldest bottle style and also comes from France, specifically from this well-known region of the northeast. Cylindrical bottle with drooping shoulders and wider in the part of the body that has traditionally been used for reds, which is not an obstacle to contain large targets of this region and others as well.
- Cava or Champagne: we could compare it with the previous one although this bottle is made with a thicker glass because it is the walls of the bottle that support the carbonic pressure of the sparkling wine they contain.
- Sherry: it is our most Spanish bottle. Original southern peninsular has been used historically for Sherry wines and some Portuguese liqueurs, for example. Its main characteristic would be the fact that it is made with a very dark glass and a pronounced mouth.
DOES THE FORM INFLUENCE ON THE WINE?
We could think that when there are so many types of bottles it is because they could somehow influence the wine, but the answer is no.
The shape of the bottle in something aesthetic and corporate. We can identify in some way the origin or style of the wine but ultimately the use of one bottle or another is practically indistinct (with exceptions)
However, the glass of the bottle has specific weight in aspects that will influence the conservation of wine:
- Colour will perform a protective function against the action of light. One of the greatest enemies for the conservation of wine. The darker the bottle, the better it will protect the wine from its natural evolution, which is why it is used mainly for aging wines. In young white and pink wines, we will usually find transparent bottles since their consumption is assumed to be rapid (1-2 years maximum).
- Thickness of the glass also has importance, especially as we said, in sparkling wines that normally have a greater thickness.