A Guide to Classic Beer Glass Styles

Ask yourself: are you even a beer geek if you don’t have an unnecessarily large range of beer glasses at home? Although, if you stole most of your collection from your local bar you might actually be less of a geek and more of a liability.

However you acquired your glasses, you’ll likely know that glassware encompasses so much more than the classic pint pot. In this article, we’ll look at the most common beer glasses and their key benefits, so you know what you’re buying (or pilfering from the bar) and when to use them.

Pint Glass

First up is the ol’ faithful pint glass. This is probably the most common glass in the US and is likely the receptacle that your beers are served up in. Why? Because they’re cheap to buy and easy to stack and clean (sorry to burst your bubble if you were expecting something a little more interesting). As the smart ones among you may have guessed, this glass holds a pint of liquid. It's a completely acceptable if not sightly boring choice for IPAs, lagers, and ales. 

If you’re drinking English ales though, you might want to go for an Imperial pint glass which has a lip at the top (it’s what the Queen drinks from, probably). Or, if the classic pint glass is too dull for your tastes, our curved beer glass also has the capacity for a full pint of beer and is a lot more fun to drink from (who doesn’t love curves).

Beer Mug

The key reasons we love beer mugs are because they're similar to us: 

  • Big
  • Robust
  • Easy to hold

Although beer mugs come in various sizes, our preference is a larger glass to use for session ales and lagers. The thick walls are hardy enough for over-enthusiastic cheersing and also do a great job of keeping your brews chilled. The handle makes it easy to hold when you’ve had a few too many and your motor skills are akin to a toddler’s (have you noticed that their cups have handles, too). The sippy-cup-style handle also helps to avoid warming up the beer with the heat of your hands.

Some beer mugs also have dimples or ridges around the outside of the glass. Many believe it’s an aesthetic thing but others argue it’s to help appreciate the color and clarity of the beer. We think it’s both. End of.  

Goblet

This Game-of-Thrones-sounding option is also known as a chalice and is the perfect level of extravagance for a banquet (Medieval or otherwise). They’re also fine for everyday use if banquets aren’t your thing. Goblets have sturdy, thick stems with a bowl-shaped glass sitting on top. The wide opening is designed to allow the drinker to analyze the aroma and flavor profile of the beer within, but it’s also a nice wide area to aim for when your drinking gets sloppier as the night wears on.

Some goblets are finished with a gold or silver rim but that serves absolutely no purpose other than making you look bougie. They come in various sizes but are best for heavy beers like potent Belgian ales, so we prefer our goblets to be on the smaller side. Our mushroom glass is another solid choice for smaller pours of hefty beers.

Pilsner Glass

Prepare to have your mind blown: pilsner glasses are used primarily for pilsners. Woahhhhh. This tall, skinny glass is designed to help you appreciate the color and carbonation of your brew, making it ideal for lighter beers. The slightly wider top helps retain the head of your beer, making every sip as fresh as the last (you could say this glass gives good head).

Pilsner glasses are growing in popularity across the US and Europe because of their flavor-enhancing properties and overall aesthetic. If long and tall is your thing, check out our slanted glass.   

Stange Glass

No, we haven’t spelled strange wrong. A stange glass is called stange because that’s the German word for rod and you can’t deny that this glass is a little rod-like. This tall, slender glass is definitely the simplest style on our list, but it’s been around for decades so no decent list of beer glasses is complete without it.

Typically, stange glasses will only hold 6.5 ounces of beer, making it a great choice for more delicate beers. However, larger styles have become available in recent years, which is handy for those of us who love a big drink.

If you’re looking for something strange instead of stange, take a look at our football glass. It’s so realistic you might be overcome by an urge to have an impromptu throw about. Do. Not. Do. It.

Classic Beer Glass Styles

As we said up top, anyone claiming to be a beer buff should have a decent collection of glasses to their name. But now, you know a little more about what each glass is for and when you should be using it. You’re welcome.


Which type of glass will you be adding to your collection, next?


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