How to … clean and polish sparkling wine glasses

In this post you will learn everything about how to clean and polish sparkling wine glasses. For the most part good sparkling wine tastes best in sparkling clean glasses. What a word play. 😄 Who thinks it’s attractive to drink from scratched and cloudy-looking glasses? Guess. No one.

What are high-quality glasses?

Great, I love that word in particular. High-quality. At the present time it has no meaning anymore.

Good glasses has particularly thin walls. They are made by machine or traditionally mouth-blown.
Beautiful high-grade glasses means, for example, crystal glasses, glasses with refinements, engravings or gold and platinum rims.

The dishwasher

No, no, and once again no. Don’t even think about it. No matter what the manufacturer says, you do not clean good glasses in the dishwasher.

Mine don’t even fit in it because the stem is too long.

Firstly dishwasher tabs and dishwasher salt permanently attack the surface of the glass. Residues from the tabs stain the glass and attack it. This means annoying streaks and discoloration of the glass. Over time, the color of refinements or engravings will fade or washed away completely.

Secondly too much heat also damages glasses. Lead crystal is turns e.g. milky from heat.

All things considered the glass simply gets damaged every time you put it in a dishwasher.

Hand washing

If you care about your champagne glasses, the only option is washing it by hand. Important to realize is that it’s not difficult.

The following rules are important:

  • Do not use too much pressure and force. Better spend a little more time to clean and polish your sparking wine glasses
  • Always hold the glass around the bowl with your hand. Especially while the goblet is being turned with the polishing cloth. Not the stem or the foot. This is the most sensitive part of the glass. Hence you will twist off the stem or the base.

What do you need to clean and polish sparkling wine glasses?

  • warm water
  • an old, clean t-shirt made of linen or cotton
  • thin rubber gloves
  • Cotton gloves

Now you are ready to start

Cleaning sparkling wine glasses

First I clean the glass thoroughly inside and outside with running warm water.
I don’t use soap, a brush or a cloth. I use a rubber glove to clean the edge or remove light stains.

Then I put it upside down on a towel. This saves the steam for polishing.
Afterwards I wash the next glass. The glasses shouldn’t dry completely for polishing.

Polishing the sparkling wine glasses

Forget about polishing cloths or linen cloths. You can save the money.

All you need is an old, clean, freshly laundered cotton or linen T-shirt for polishing the glasses. T-Shirts are soft and flexible. Until now I used only a T-shirt to polish the glass.
Ideally, you take a cotton glove to hold the glass in addition. This avoids new grease stains.

Finally I hold the glass up to the light to check whether there are still streaks on the glass.

If the glasses are really clean, hardly any bubbles will form on the surface of the glass when you drink sparkling wine. Cotton lint can be a reason why the mousseux escapes too quickly from the sparkling wine.

Wash t-shirt and glove after usage.


Glasses need space to be stored. To avoid scratches, they should not be too close together.

Avoid contact with other glasses or metal.

Stains on the glass

You cannot remove lime stains or milky discoloration simply by polishing. Light limes stains can be pretreated with lemon acid.

Firstly fill the glasses with warm water and add 1/4 teaspoon of lemon acid to the glass. Wait 30 seconds. Do not stir with a teaspoon or something similar. That causes scratches. Thereafter you can clean the sparkling wine glasses as described above and then polish them.

If the glass is cloudy and cannot be cleaned, it may be corroded. Unfortunately, you cannot reverse glass corrosion. You can recognize it by small cracks on the surface of the glass. The glasses do not break as a result, but the cracks make them cloudy.