Bocksbeutel – An 18th-century flat flask from Franconia in Germany and Styria in Austria, still popular in these regions although rarely seen in the export markets. Its design is said to be copied from a goat’s scrotum.
Bouteille – the French word for bottle, of which there are over 50 known shapes and sizes in France alone.
Fassle – a German wine vessel, sometimes made of leather, from which the contents are squirted into the mouth. Now used only at festivals and other celebrations.
Flagon – a wine flagon is usually made of green glass, unlike the better-known brown ones for beer or cider. It is a large, flattish bottle often used in New World countries to hold inexpensive wine.
Fiasco – many wine guides simply describe fiasco as an Italian bottle or flask,
sometimes contained in a straw basket. Here’s how it came by the name . . . When the Etruscans began to develop glass production in the 4th century BC, they discovered that it was possible to blow a bottle in the shape of a round bubble. However, when the buddle cooled and they tried to stand it upright, it fell over – it was a fiasco, a failure. To correct the problem, the asked their women to weave flat straw bases into which the bottle was inserted. The fiasco can still be seen in Chianti and Orvieto.
Fillette – a slim half-bottle which is still widely found in the Loire Valley.
Flute d’Alsace – a tall, slender bottle used for Alsace wine.
Jug – a large bottle with a handle. It measures one US gallon and usually contains pasteurised wine of a basic quality, a favourite purchase of President Clinton when he was governor of Arkansas.
Porron – a Spanish flask with an extended neck or spout, often made of kid leather or wood. It is popular in the Basque region and regularly seen on sporting occasions when it facilitates the swift consumption of wine.
Pot – also known as le pot de Beaujolais, this is a half-litre, gently curved bottle still found in restaurants. Piat, the prominent Beaujolais negociants, have their own 75cl (centilitre) version.