This from an IPNC press release:
"After two years of research, comparative tastings, and evaluation of prototype glasses, Oregon winemakers and Georg Riedel have arrived at a new shape of wine glass designed especially for Oregon Pinot noir. What began as a wishful conversation between IPNC Executive Director Amy Wesselman and Georg Riedel has now been given form, literally, and the first shipment of the new tulip-shaped glass is currently on its way from Kufstein, Austria."
...and this lovely nugget...
"Ms. Wesselman shipped a selection of some of Oregon's best Pinot noirs to Austria for Mr. Riedel to work with in his own facility. Six months later, an answer was delivered in the form of a large-bowled, tulip-shaped glass that flares out gently at the top. This glass was presented along with 11 others in a workshop similar to the first. Tasters agreed that the slightly narrower opening of this glass seemed to focus aromas. Its flared lip reproduced the mouth-feel tasters had experienced with the Grand Cru Burgundy glass. Every single workshop participant agreed that the new glass offered Oregon Pinot [N]oir lovers the best of both worlds."
[sigh]...I've gone on record as pointing out that mouth-feel isn't affected by the shape of the glass, and I feel this is just more of the same "suggestibility" of the panel participants. But I agree that a slightly narrowed opening helps concentrate the aromas, and the tulip shape bowl for more surface area within the glass will also help on this point...
Now, did we really need this new glass?
Of course not, but it makes a great partnership for both Oregon Pinot Noir growers and the Riedel company - which could now have yet another region recommending those glasses to it's clients. And Mr. Riedel gets to be invited over to be the MC for the whole shebang as part of his reward (see the release).
"This is a significant development in the advancement of Oregon as a premier Pinot growing region," said Tony Rynders, winemaker at Domaine Serene. "It's all about having the right vehicle to show off our wines, and the group of winemakers and wine professionals involved in developing this glass unanimously agreed that it made an enormous difference."
Uhhhhm, right.... So now an appellation won't be complete or validated without a new creation by Riedel to showcase it...? And I suppose of course, that it WILL have to be varietal specific as well... (I think it's obvious from the tone of the quote that this is more of a marketing coup than necessity for the enjoyment of these wines...)Perhaps next we'll see a Lodi Chenin Blanc glass being offered, or Chalk Hill Malbec glasses, or some other truly obscure wine/varietal pairing glasses showing up in the catalog...
Frankly, this is just another opportunity for the neophyte, uninformed or impressionable to be separated from their cash by buying yet another supposedly "necessary" piece of stemware.