July 02, 2020
There are so many glassware options for beer, from pint glasses to beer mugs, choosing the best glass for your type of beer feels overwhelming. Is it just some scheme from the glassmakers to get us to buy more glasses? No, it may be hard to believe but choosing the proper glassware actually makes a difference! Just like choosing the right wine glass for the type of wine, choosing beer glassware can enhance your beer drinking experience.
We know enjoying a cold one at the end of the day is so satisfying but we're going to have to slap the beer can out of your hands because you're doing it wrong! Trust us, it is so much more satisfying to enjoy your beer when you're sipping it through the right glass, and here's why.
Why it matters
It affects every aspect of your whole experience, from your first sip to your last! Beer glasses are designed to maintain a certain level of head, carbonation, temperature, and enhance the aromas of your beer. Each glass has its unique features that enhance specific beers and their flavors, aromas, and mouthfeel.
Another important factor that goes into your taste experience is the psychology behind it all. Anticipation and perception play a huge role in how you'll experience and enjoy the beer. A beer presented in glassware can change the way you perceive the beer because you can see the carbonation, the head, and the color. Just like when we get excited about a beautifully presented dish at a restaurant, pouring beer into a glass gives us the same excited anticipation and expectation of a great tasting beer. Plus, it actually affects your experience, which we'll explain further in this article.
Customize your experience
Besides picking out your glassware for each type of beer you can further customize your experience by adding custom artwork to your glassware. At Beverage Factory, we offer custom printed growlers and glassware with an effortless process that is easy on you. With our team of design experts, you will be able to see your design mocked up on to your glassware before it is printed. Learn more about customizing or branding your purchase here.
Pint Glasses/Shaker Glasses
The classic Pint Glass is a bar staple and an icon of beer enthusiasts everywhere. You will find this used as the most common beer serving glass in America. The American Pint Glass has a tapered cylindrical shape, wider at the opening and tapering to a smaller size at the base. Typically holding 16 oz. of liquid, this glass is often used for most beers, including lagers, ales, IPAs, stouts, and porters. The wide opening allows for head retention and allows for beers with big noses to engulf you in their aromatic experience.
The English Pint Glass, or Imperial Pint Glass or Nonic Pint Glass, is actually larger than the American Pint Glass, holding 20 oz. of liquid. Similar to the American Pint Glass, this one slightly bows out near the top, encouraging nice head development.
Tulip Pints taper much more towards the bottom and bow out near the bottom half of the glass. These pints are ideal for dry stouts, like the famous Guinness. This bowl-like shape helps emphasize the roasted and malty notes in the stout.
The iconic beer mug, while well known, is not as popular these days. Beer mugs come in all shapes and sizes but they are often quite large and hold a significant volume of liquid. Their thick glass construction ensures the beer stays cold for longer and the handle allows you to enjoy your beer without warming up the glass. This thick glass can make it a bit more difficult to sip from and occasional decorative dimples on a beer mug are designed to help you appreciate the color and clarity of your beer. These glass mugs are best for American ales and lagers, Scottish ales, and Irish dry stouts.
This traditional drinking vessel looks impressive and ornate with decorative artwork and intricate details. Steins aren't as popular these days and can mostly be found for decorative purposes but this traditional beer vessel still serves its purpose. Steins, like beer mugs, have a thick insulated construction to keep your beer cooler for longer and the handle allows you to easily grip the large stein without heating up the beer. The lid was historically believed to be more sanitary and meant to prevent the bubonic plague.
Goblets and Chalices
With a thick stem and large bowl-shaped vessel, these wide-mouthed glasses maintain the beer's head and allow for deep sips for enjoying the aroma of the beer. These often ornate and decoratively designed drinking vessels are no longer as popular as they used to be; however, these often served German bocks and maibocks; Belgian IPAs; Belgian ales; Belgian dubbels, tripels and quadrupels; and other beers with a high ABV.
These tall and slender glasses with a more narrow body but a slightly wider opening at the top. This unique design displays the color, clarity, and carbonation of the beer. The wider top allows for head retention and for the aromas from the beer to be enhanced. Pilsner glasses have little to no curvature and tend to hold a little less than other beer glasses. These glasses are ideal for enjoying American lagers and pilsners, hefeweizens, blonde ales, and any beers with high carbonation.
These elongated and slender glasses are often confused with the Pilsner glasses; however, the Weizen glass has more of a curvature to the glass to enhance the aromas and maintain a thick foamy head. Like the Pilsner glass, it's tall and elongated shape allows you to appreciate the color, clarity, and carbonation of the beer. This beer glass is best for wheat beers, such as Weizenbocks, kristalweizens, and wheat ales. These glasses typically hold more than a pint, approximately .5 liters of beer.
Often associated with fine brandy or cognac, this stunted bowl-shaped glass with a short stem can also be used for higher gravity beers. The bowl shape allows you to swirl your beer around and stirring up volatiles, bringing out the full aroma of the beer. This glass is often large but shouldn't be filled to the brim because you'll want to allow room to swirl and enjoy the brew. These snifter glasses are perfect for beers with strong flavors and aromas with higher alcohol content, such as Belgian ales, India pale ales, and wheat wines.
Tulip & Thistle Glasses
With a fine stem and bulbous base tapering to a more narrow opening, these glasses are designed to maintain a foamy head and enhance hoppy or malty brews. The fine outward curve of the rim of the glass. Ideal for stronger brews, these glasses help funnel the strong flavors and aromas of the beer. Like, snifter glasses, these have a bowl-shaped base for swirling the beer and activating the full aromas. These glasses are perfect for stronger, aromatic brews, like double IPAs and Belgian ales
Also known as, stick glass, pole glass, or rod glass, these cylindrical glasses taper just slightly near the base. This glass is designed for delicate beers such as kolsch, lambic, gueze or rye to help intensify the aromas and flavors by concentrating the volatiles of the beer. Generally, these Stange glasses hold about 6.5 ounces of beer to ensure the beer is finished before it begins to warm up.
Tasting & Sampler Glasses
Typically used for beer flights and samples, these small glasses come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Designed to be miniature versions of beer glassware, you can achieve a similar experience while sampling craft beers. Typically holding about 2.5 to 6 ounces of beer, these small glasses allow you to taste multiple beers without having to purchase or pour a full size. You can learn more about beer flights in our Beer Flights Blog and build your own flight with these tasting glass sets.
Need help choosing glassware? Contact our product experts 800-710-9939 for help choosing the perfect glassware for your needs.