History of Riedel Glasses

By: Sanjeevkumar

The family has been in the glass business for 300years, with 11 generations keeping the family business intact. The Riedel storybegins in 1678 in the northern part of Bohemia, bordering Schlesia today theCzech republic and Poland respectively. This part of Bohemia was a Germanspeaking enclave known as the Sudetenland. The Venetians brought back theknowledge of glass making from the Near East around 1.000 A.D. The knowledge ofproducing glass spread slowly towards the northern part of Europe, searchingfor energy, critical to the melting of glass. Wood was the source, causing aglassmaker migration to the forests. Due to this migration, a glass culturedeveloped in Bohemia in the 17th century.

The first in thetrade of luxury glass goods was Johann Christoph Riedel, born in 1678. Hejourneyed all over Europe trading glass, travelling as far as Spain andPortugal. The earnings from the business justified the long, arduous anddangerous travels. The 9th generation, Claus J. Riedel (born 1925) had avision. He changed stemware from traditional coloured and cut glass to plain,unadorned, thin blown, long stemmed wine glasses. He gained immediaterecognition from sophisticated customers and museums. Many design awardssignalled that a new era had began. Museums bought pieces for their exhibition,like the Museum of Modern Art in New York, which today still has Riedel intheir permanent collection.

Based on his unique designs, Claus Riedel was first inhistory to recognize the effect of shapes on the perception of alcoholicbeverages. His work has influenced and changed the appearance of stemwareforever. His master piece "Sommeliers" was introduced in Orvieto, 30years ago, the first ever stemware line to be based on the character of wine.Please purchase on online

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