How to Stock your home bar with beer glasses for properly serving beer.
Beer should be served in the type of beer glass that can highlight the specific qualities present in the style of beer. The greater the variety of beer styles you like to drink increases the amount of beer glassware you need to stock in your bar. The selection process can be tricky and this article will hopefully explain the selection process and how and why glasses are paired with beer styles. The following is a list of top ten beer glasses used to enjoy the most popular styles of beer.
Rules of Thumb:
1. When pairing beer glasses with beers, know the ABV or alcohol content of the beer. The higher the ABV in the beer, the greater the curve the beer glass should have.
2. Beer should be served at the proper temperature. This varies from style to style but a rule of thumb is the lower the ABV, the colder the beer. Serving a Belgian triple with a high ABV at 35-40F will mask the subtlety of some of the flavors. Conversely, serving a light beer or American adjunct lager at 55-60F will unmask the complete lack of flavor present.
People drink 60% slower from a straight beer glass when compared to a curved glass. Seems people have a harder time judging the halfway point of a curved glass.
(Source: Glass Shape Influences Consumption Rate for Alcoholic Beverages. PLOS One.)
1. Tulip Pint Glass
If you are starting a beer glass collection or can only stock one
style of beer glass in your home bar, the Tulip Pint Glass is one to
buy. One word describes this glass; versatile. The glass is used to
serve a wide variety of the more common styles of lagers and ales and
specifically, stouts and porters. Great for session beers and for
Shop for a tulip pint glass here: Tulip Pint Glasses
2. Tulip Pokal Glass
Now that you have a glass to serve the more common beer types, its time to start collecting glasses used to accentuate particular attributes present in the various styles of beer. The tulip pokal glass is a pokal glass (has a stem and an elongated bowl) that is shaped like a tulip blossom. The tulip shape allows for supporting thick heads from hoppy beer styles like IPAs.
Shop for Tulip Pokal Glasses here: Tulip Pokal Glasses
3. Snifter Beer Glass
Snifters are typically used to serve beers with higher alcohol content. The shape of the glass captures aroma and wide bowl allows for gentle warming from the hand when held (also encouraging the release aroma). Once this glass is your collection, you?re ready to start pouring Imperial IPAs, Imperial Stouts, Imperial Anything, Strong Ales and more other styles of beer that are over 6% -7% ABV.
Shop for Snifter Beer Glasses here: Snifter Beer Glasses
4. Wheat Beer Glass
Some beer styles are interchangeable with a few different types of beer glass types. This is not the case with a wheat beer. Wheat beer should be enjoyed in only a wheat beer glass. The length of the glass allows for a generous space for a large head and taper at the bottom allows yeast to settle. Use this glass to enjoy any of the various wheat beer styles including Hefeweizen, Dunkelweizen, Weizenbock (serve in smaller 12-16 ounce wheat beer glass) and Gose. Avoid all temptations and goofy marketing efforts that suggest garnishing wheat beer with a lemon, orange or other citrus. The acids in the citrus will kill the head and any hopes of head retention (one of the benefits afforded by pouring in this type of beer glass). Shop for Wheat Beer Glasses here: Wheatbeer Glasses
The goblet beer glass is interchangeable with the beer chalice (typically, only the thickness of the glass separates the two glass types). Use either glass to enjoy Belgian ales. You?ll feel like a king or queen enjoying a Trappist ale in a goblet. The wide bowl allows your nose to receive the whole 9 yards of the aroma of the beer. Hold the bowl in your hand with the stem between your fingers and this will gently warm the beer to optimal cellar temperature. Now that this glass is part of your collection, use it when pouring Belgian Ales, Trappist Ales, Dubbles, Tripples, Quadruples.
Shop for Goblet beer glasses here: Goblet Beer Glasses
6. Pilsner Glass
The pilsner glass is a classic style of beer glass widely used even before prohibition. Use this glass to enjoy its namesake - pilsners. The slender length of the glass highlights the hallmarks for a good pilsner, e.g., golden color, good clarity and moderate to high carbonation. You can also use this glass to enjoy other low ABV lagers and perhaps a wheat beer in a pinch. Shop for Pilsner Beer Glasses here: Pilsner Beer Glasses
7. Stange Glass
When you think of a stange glass, picture yourself sitting in a German beer garden in the summer under a walnut tree. A waiter is zipping around carrying a tray or rack filled with smaller cylinder glasses filled with refreshing Kolsch. With this picture in your mind?s eye, you have captured the essence of this beer glass type. Made to drink lower ABV German style beers in small refreshing doses served nice and cold. This type of glass affords a thick head and good retention but everything else about the design of this glass is straight forward. Use to enjoy Altbier, Gose and most commonly Kolsch.
Shop for Stange Glasses here: Stange Beer Glasses
Continuing with the German beer theme, the willybecher (or willibecher) is a great all-around beer glass. Think of it as the big brother of the stange glass. The willibecher is used for German lagers but works perfectly well with most ales. Nothing is fancy about this glass, making it another everyday beer glass but with a touch of flare that can?t be found in the American pint / Boston shaker glass. The ergonomics of the glass lend for good grip and it sits well in the hand. Use for Amber Ales, Bitter Ales, Black Lagers (schwarzbier), Brown Ales, Cream Ales, Japanese Lagers, Maibock, Marzen, Milk Stouts, Rauchbier and Saisons.
Shop for Willybecher Glasses here: Willybecher Geer Glasses
The flute glass is reminiscent of a champagne glass and is used to serve a select few different styles of beer. Carbonation release is the key function of this glass and this lends itself perfectly for enjoying Biere Brut (like DeuS) and Lambics and Gueuze beers.
Shop for flute beer glasses here: Flute Beer Glasses
10. Thistle glass
Shaped like the national flower of Scotland, the thistle glass is designed for enjoying Scotch ales. The glass type borrows the attributes of both the tulip pokal glass and the large bowl of a snifter. Use this eye-catching glass to serve your favorite Scotch ale.
Shop for a Thistle Glass here: Thistle Beer Glass