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Wine Cellar Inspirations: Comparing Different Wine Bottle Sizes

October 27th, 2021

Is there such a thing as “standard” wine bottle size? What is that “standard” then? Comparing wine bottle sizes will help you expand your knowledge on the topic. Whether you’re a newbie or a veteran wine lover, it definitely helps to dig into the details.

Comparing wine bottle sizes

Let’s start with the basics!

When it comes to wine bottle sizes, you’ll find that these usually vary. Factors such as dimension and shape are big influences, among others. But as far as a “standard” wine bottle size goes, there are measurements that have been accepted worldwide. These usually come to around 3-3.2 inches in diameter and 12 inches in height. In comparison, measurements smaller than the “standard” are described as “split-sized” or “piccolo.” Piccolo means “small” in Italian. These bottles are also known as a quarter bottle, pony or snipe. They are typically used for a single serving of champagne. There are also bottles called “Demi” or “Half”. This is what we call in layman’s terms as the “half bottle”. These bottles are distinctly slimmer compared to the piccolo. You will also notice that they are often used for dessert wines. Half bottle generally holds around 375 ml of liquor with 9.5″L x 2.25″W.

Now let’s go to the larger sizes. First up are the Magnum/Champagne bottles. This is what we call the larger-format wine bottles. Wine racks have also been named to accommodate them: “magnum wine racks”. A Magnum can hold around1.5 liters (50 oz.) of liquor and generally measures 13.5″L x 4 – 4 1/2″W. But what about if it’s double the size of a Magnum? We refer to this as the “Jeroboam”. As for much larger quantities of sparkling wine, the term used is “Rehoboam”. You will find these bottles mostly in large, established Champagne houses.

Large format wine bottles

Importance of wine bottle sizes!

So why is it important to keep this “standard” sizing in mind? Obviously, when you build your wine storage, you have to take into account the bottle sizes you already own. You should also think about future acquisitions. It’s recommended to make allowances for smaller or larger than standard sized bottles. Usually, adjustable racking units or shelves will be able to get the job done. If you are building a formal wine room, an inventory of your collection is essential. Consideration of wine bottle sizes will help maximize your storage capacity. ^_^