Each bottle has a specific name depending on its size. And most of these names actually come from the Bible! This tradition was established during the 19th century by wine merchants in Champagne, before spreading out to the rest of the world.

1. Split

The smallest bottle you’ll ever find! Mainly used in catering (airlines, trains, hotels…), it is just enough for a glass of wine.

2. Half or Demie

Simply half a standard bottle, as its name suggests. These 37.5cl are mostly for restaurants and sweet wine, but can sometimes be found in supermarkets.

3. Standard

Your usual bottle, containing 75cl. Many shapes exist depending on regions and wines, but we’ll have a closer look later on in another post!

4. Magnum

“Magnum” means “big” in latin – and double in wine language! It defines a big, 1.5L bottle of wine.

5. Jeroboam or Double Magnum

Equivalent to 4 standard bottles, or 3 litres – this is heavy. The “Jeroboam” word is mainly for Burgundy and Champagne, while “double magnum” is used for Bordeaux. Jeroboam was the founder and first King of the Kingdom of Israel (933 B.C.)!

wine botlles

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6. Rehoboam

Almost exclusively used in Champagne, a Rehoboam is enough to pour 6 bottles (4.5 litres). Réhoboam was Solomon’s son and King of Judea (930 B.S.)

7. Methuselah or Impérial          

A superb 6 litres-bottle! Mathusalem is a biblical character, who lived for 969 years according to the legend.

8. Salmanazar

9 litres or 12 standard bottles! Named after 5 different kings of Assyria.

9. Balthazar

Huge bottle equivalent to 16 standards, or 12 litres. Two different Balthazar may be the origin of the name: a king of Babylon or the famous Wise Man.

10. Nebuchadnezzar

You’ll need a lot of company to drink up this 15-litres bottle! Nabuchodonosor was one of the most well-known kings of Babylon (605 B.C.)

 

Bigger, more impressive bottles also exist: Melchior (18L), Solomon (20L) or Goliath (26L). But the world record is probably in China, with a bottle containing 1850-litres!