Anatomy of a Wine Bottle

One of the most interesting and sexy parts of any wine is that is has its own unique body. (To learn more about a wine’s body check out the All About the Body article.) But it ain’t just wine that’s rocking a fine bod… it’s the thing that holds it too. That’s right, wine bottles have bodies, and we think they’re pretty sexy. So did almost every still life painter there ever was… just saying.

In order to fully appreciate the vessels in which your delicious juice is held, we cooked up some informative and graphic infographics (they’re so hot right now) to help you get to know your bottles’ bodies.



The finish, the neck, shoulders… mmm. A bottle is a being with curves to show the world! You might notice that the shoulders of this bottle are gently sloping down to where they meet the body. You might also notice that not all wine bottles look this way. Astute observation! What’s the deal with that?

Just like with wines (and for that matter humans) the bodies of bottles come in many different shapes and sizes that tend to vary based on the style of wine inside and where that wine was made. The bottle above has sloping or “low” shoulders and a slightly smaller punt, which means it is a Burgundy or a Rhône bottle.

high shoulders inforgraphic

This “glassterpiece” of Malbec has high shoulders unlike it’s counterpart, which means that it is a Bordeaux style bottle, known for its straight-sidedness and shoulder height. To be clear, if a wine is in a Bordeaux bottle it doesn’t necessarily mean that the wine itself is a Bordeaux. The same goes for the Burgundy or Rhône styled bottles. Those names (while they do refer to specific wine growing regions) in this case just refer to the style of bottle that was made famous in either region.

These are the two most popular styles of wine bottle by far. Champagne or Sparkling bottles closely resemble the Burgundy bottle, but are thicker walled, have a taller neck and a very large punt (designed to allow yeast and particulate to settle in the bottom of the bottle instead of floatin’ around).

Beyond those big three, many other bottle shapes and sizes are (for the most part) a novelty. Perhaps the most common “funky” looking bottle is the Chianti bottle, known (awesomely) as the fiasco. Score. It resembles a coconut of some sort… or as artist Hallie Gluk so accurately discovered, a large man wearing overalls. Bellagio_ChiantichianteBeyond Chianti, there is a world of esoteric and rare bottles in fun and exciting shapes. We don’t have time to walk you through all of them, but we will leave you with our favorite. This bottle is a gem used to hold German wines from Franconia and it goes by the lovely name Bocksbeutel! Feast your eyes and remember: sometimes the bottle is just as sexy as what’s inside it!