As Maximillian Riedel says, the glass is the messenger. So does it matter who is delivering that message. I certainly think so. So many times I have gone to fine dining establishments with the intention to get a nice bottle of wine to share with the table. The wine list is superb. The bottle looks like a winner. The glass kills the moment.
Now there are plenty of wine glass producers out there but I will stand next to the Riedel stemware as consistently delivering a great message. Riedel has gone as far as creating varietal specific stemware and several levels that range from value driven everyday users to top end sommeliers.
What did they do to make them perfect for each varietal? First, they start with a lead oxide crystal base. Now first thing that comes to mind is that lead is bad. This is not the case. This is an oxide that is part of the structure of the glass and does not leach out. It meets and surpasses all requirements for a food grade consumer based product. Second, they experimented repeatedly to find the perfect shape and size for each style of wine. Some wines are more aromatic and some a little less so. Some wines are very acidic and bright while others come in under the radar. The shapes created for each varietal harness the attributes of the wine and deliver it to your nose and palate with the utmost of finesse.
Try drinking your favorite wine from a solo cup. Then place it in riedel varietal specific stemware.
What kind of message does each vessel deliver. You be the judge.