Published on December 4, 2020

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Courtesy of CB2

I never paid much attention to my wineglasses. For nearly 12 years I dragged the same stemware—a somewhat ornate set that had been given to me as a housewarming gift from my mom for my first apartment—from place to place. That’s until the last one broke a few months ago. I felt a pang of nostalgia, but I had been eyeing Zalto wineglasses for quite some time now. 

Oenophiles tout them as the holy grail of the wine world: They’re so light! And graceful! And they are said to make wine taste better! The first time I held one at a NYC restaurant, it felt like lifting a delicate angel wing; the stem was so fine I was surprised it didn’t snap in my grip. The wine itself tasted just as heavenly. I desperately wanted my own—but was I grown-up enough to spend $60 a pop?

Reality sank in quickly: That comes to $720 for a set of 12. I wasn’t making the leap into fancy glassware anytime soon. They’d never survive a game night with my (clumsy) friends. They wouldn’t make it through a cycle in our micro-size dishwasher (and who has the discipline to wash drinkware by hand every single time?). Plus, I wouldn’t have the heart (or the wallet) to replace one if it shattered.

So I did the next best thing: scoured a ton of shops for similar—but affordable—alternatives. After a few hours of research, I landed on CB2’s Rona wineglasses. They clock in at $6 apiece—a 10th of the price! And while they don’t have the ultra-thin stem of a Zalto, they have the same allure: delicate, oversize, elegantly tapered. A pack of 10 cost me the same amount as a single glass if I had splurged. My favorite Sancerres and Barolos taste just fine, and best of all, I don’t hesitate to throw them in the dishwasher at the end of the night.

This story was originally published in January 2020 and has since been updated. 

See more stories like this: 
The Non-Snob’s Guide to Buying Great Wine at an Affordable Price
The Ultimate Guide to Buying the Best Summer Wines
The Rules of Rosé: A Wine Expert Shares Her Tips

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