If we talk about the size and shape of wine bottles, we have a catalog of 12 different sizes and 6 types of bottles, all of them with their picturesque names, peculiarities and characteristics.
Even this could seem something secondary, the size of it affects the wine evolution. For example, in smaller bottles the aging process is accelerated, while in larger bottles there is a lower concentration of oxygen, reducing the impact of possible thermal variations and resulting in more harmonious aging.
Which are the sizes for wine bottles?
In the following paragraph, a list was made, in order from smallest to largest and their different shapes:
- Piccolo or Split: it is the smallest size, with a capacity of 18.7 cl. It is generally used in hostelry and individual services in the field of transportation.
- Half: equivalent to half a bottle of wine with a capacity of 37.5 cl.
- Standard: it is the bottle that we usually find on sale, the most commonly seen and used. They have a capacity of 75 cl.
- Magnum: with a capacity of 1.5 liters, it is equivalent to two standard bottles of wine.
- Double Magnum: as its name suggests, it is equivalent to double the previous size, so that it covers a total of 3 liters, equivalent to four standard bottles.
- Jeroboam: it has a capacity of 4.5 liters for still wine. For sparkling wines, a Jeroboam is equivalent to the capacity of a Double Magnum. When it is a 4.5 liter bottle for sparkling wines or Champagne, the bottle is called Rehoboam.
- Imperiale: It collects a total of 6 liters, containing the equivalent of 8 standard bottles of still wine. In the case of sparkling wine, it is called Methuselah.
- Salmanazar: it contains 9 liters, equivalent to 12 standard bottles.
- Balthazar: its capacity is 12 liters, equivalent to 16 standard bottles.
- Nabucodonosor: it holds a total of 15 liters, equivalent to 20 standard bottles.
- Melchior: it is the largest size, holding 18 liters, equivalent to 24 standard bottles.
Which are the wine bottle shapes?
There are 6 different shapes of wine bottles. This is due to the variety of traditional glass blowing methods according to the geographical area where they were made.
Their names are related to the wine regions where they were developed and used to store wine in their origins.
We tell you about it:
- Alsacien bottle: this is a taller and thinner bottle than other types, with slightly sloping shoulders. Generally these bottles contain Riesling grapes, and can be brown if the grape is French, or green if the origin of the grape is German. It is also known as a Germanic bottle.
- Bordeux bottle: : with a cylindrical body, straight sides and high shoulders, this is the most common shape. It comes from the city of Bordeaux and was traditionally intended for blends of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, but nowadays most of the world’s wines use this bottle shape.
- Burgundy bottle: this bottle has a shape reminiscent of a cone, due to its sloping shoulders and a higher neck than the Bordeaux bottle. It is traditionally used for Chardonnay, although it is increasingly common to use it also for Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.
- Porto bottle: This shape resembles the Bordeaux bottle, but its neck has a spherical protuberance in order to trap excess sediment during pouring. As its name suggests, it is a shape intended for Port, Sherry, Madeira and other fortified wines.
- Provence bottle: These are bottles that resemble an hourglass or a bowl, as a narrowing of the shape can be seen in the middle of the bottle. This shape comes from Côtes de Provence, a region with a strong tradition in the production of rosé wines.
- Champagne bottle: These bottles are similar in shape to Burgundy bottles, but heavier and thicker because they must withstand the high pressure resulting from sparkling wines. They are used for champagne and other sparkling wines such as cava or prosecco.