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Entertaining

Types of Beer Glasses

In the last few years, beer has gone from a game-day essential to a complex, culinary drink. Unique craft beers are less of a quirky find and more a staple on menus and grocery shelves. But in the same way that a Chardonnay glass is designed to help keep the wine cool, and a Pinot Noir glass directs flavors to the palate, beer glass styles are uniquely suited to different beers, with the various shapes and sizes allowing the unique properties of a brew to shine through.

While beer experts may advocate for owning a wide range of glasses, it’s not necessarily practical for the casual beer drinker—or modern kitchen storage. So to help stock your preferred set of glassware, we’ve compiled some information on a few of the most common types of beer glasses.

Half pint beer glass Pilsner beer glass and scotch glass

Traditional pint:

This is the most common beer glass, and can work for every type of beer. Pint glasses vary slightly by country, as American, English, Irish and German pints are all slightly different shapes and sizes. The American version holds 16 oz. of liquid and is tapered with straight sides. Behind almost any bar, you’ll likely see pint glasses stacked four-or-five-high—so you know that they’re easy to store.

Pilsner:

While designed for a pilsner beer, this glass also works for a lager or blonde ale. It’s made from thinner glass, and the shape is long, slender and tapered, with some variation between styles—some pilsner glasses are curved, while others are straight. The height is designed to showcase a pilsner's signature golden color, clarity and carbonation, as bubbles move like they do in a Champagne glass, while the wide mouth allows for a foamy head.

Craft beer mugs and glasses Belgian ale, I.P.A. and stout beer glasses

Weizen:

Tall and curved, the weizen is designed to hold wheat beers, though it can also work for a gose or white ale. The height shows off the bright color, the curve near the bottom traps any yeast or sediment, and the wide mouth allows for the beer's characteristic thick foam, which captures the aromas and provides vibrant contrast to the wheat beer's golden color. A Weizen glass can also serve as a substitute for a pilsner glass, and because it’s made with thinner glass, it’s easy to pop a citrus garnish on the rim.

Stemmed tulip:

This glass is tapered near the top, so it locks in the aroma, which helps enhance the flavor of the beer. But the wide lip still allows for a foamy head. The stemmed tulip glass is best used with strong beers and hoppy styles such as double stouts, saisons, and Belgian beers and other ales.

Beer mugs filled with ale

Mug:

Strong and sturdy, the beer mug evolved from the German beer stein and is suited for a range of different beers. It's ideal for keeping beer cold, thanks to the thick glass and the handle, which keeps your hand from warming the beer. Its strength also allows for some robust, enthusiastic toasts. Store one in the freezer for a cool, frosted-mug effect and a beer that's extra crisp.

It’s not necessary for the average home to have a different glass for every kind of brew. But with a few variations in your glassware collection, you can impress beer-drinking guests—and experience beer in a new way.

Looking for a beer glass for your brews? Find the style you need in our selection.

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