Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs. You can also follow me on Twitter: @AskDrVinny.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
How can I remove salt-water spots from my fine crystal glasses?
—Herb Ellenburg, Baton Rouge, La.
Salt-water spots? I'd start by not washing your wineglasses in the ocean. If you mean water spots leftover from a dishwasher, invest in a polishing cloth made specifically for glassware. And avoid washing glasses with soap in your dishwasher (the hot water is enough to get them clean). Soap residue in the steam will make the glasses cloudy over time, so if you are using soap in the dishwasher, remove your glasses before the dry cycle. If your glasses are just becoming cloudy over time, this is called "etching," and is a byproduct of aging you can't do much about. If you wash the glasses by hand and want to have a beautiful gleam to them, steam them over a teakettle and dry with a polishing cloth. This really works!
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