Beer Glassware and Styles Guide

Guide to Glassware

After browsing our cocktail glassware crash course, you’ve mastered the key differences between a Collins glass and a hi-ball glass. Most bar and restaurant owners understand the need for specific glassware like martini glasses but might order identical beer glassware and call it a day.

It’s imperative to understand the various beer glasses and their uses when you’re serving ales, lagers, pilsners, imperial stouts, IPAs, and other signature craft beer styles. What should you reach for when pouring a wheat pour? How do you serve an amber ale to retain the foamy head?

Beer glassware is engineered to bring out the aromatics and flavor of specific craft beer. Investing in high-quality commercial beer glassware can prevent issues like shattered or chipped pint glasses and ensure your drink presentation exceeds your customers’ expectations. Learn about the essential beer glass styles below before you declare your bar open for business.

Beer Mugs 
Beer mugs are durable, heavy beer glass options that date back to the Middle Ages. Beer steins of yesteryear had lids to ward off flies during the Black Plague. Today, beer mugs contain handles for a satisfying and easy-to-execute clink during a toast or goal celebration.

This classic pub glassware prevents heat from transferring from the drinker’s hand to the glass and provides adequate insulation for cold beers. Beer mugs do not come in a uniform shape or size but typically hold a large volume of beer.

Pint Glasses
The all-purpose, utilitarian pint glass, typically sized to hold 16 ounces of beer, is ideal for serving a wide range of beer styles. Must-owns for every establishment with a liquor license, pint glasses are inexpensive to manufacture, easy to clean, and designed for stacking and storage.

Pint glasses feature a slight taper, so the mouth is wider than the base. Ales, porters, stouts, and lagers — nearly any style of beer is crisp and refreshing in a pint glass.

Pilsner Glasses 
The shape of these tall, slender glasses showcases the color and effervescence of pilsners and other lighter beers. Pilsner glasses retain the head of the beer so that drinkers can savor the volatile aromatics within these beers.

Embrace the carbonation and clarity of your lighter beers while ensuring your patrons can properly enjoy the intended taste by serving them in pilsner glasses. Our selection of pilsner glasses ranges in capacity from eight ounces to 23 ounces.

Goblet Glasses 
Goblet glasses, which can also be called chalice glasses, instantly transform the presentation of craft beer. While goblet glasses could be considered ornamental, the large, round bowl and thick stem promote head retention. A wide mouth encourages deep, hearty sips, so your customers come back for more Belgian strong dark ales and IPAs.

It is common to serve German Maibock and Berliner Weisse in goblet glasses. A goblet variant called a Schooner glass is the traditional glassware for Newcastle Brown Ale.

Belgian Glasses (Tulip Glasses) 
The tulip glass, often referred to as the Belgian glass, makes its mark with a bulbous body and a flared lip that can resemble a tulip. This unique shape enhances the flavor and aroma of malty, hoppy beers like Belgian ales. American IPAs and pale ales also present well in a Belgian glass, as do spiked ciders.

The short stem of the tulip glass facilitates swirling to open up any beer, and the body shape captures foamy heads naturally. If you’re serving Scotch Ale turn to a thistle glass, which is a modified tulip glass resembling the national flower of Scotland.

Weizen Glass 
Authentic Bavarian Weizen glasses are essential for unlocking the clove and banana aromas that are the signature of Weizenbier (wheat beer). The thin walls and considerable length provide ample room for the fluffy, thick heads associated with wheat beers. The standard size for a Weizen glass holds just under 17 ounces of beer.

Brandy Snifter 
Even if you’re not serving dark spirits to your customers, a brandy snifter comes in handy for capturing the distinct aromas of Strong Ale, Barleywine, and Imperial Stout. The wide bowl, tapered mouth, and stemmed glass circulate the smells of these ales for a sensory sensation.

Stock your bar with several brandy snifters in addition to your craft beer glasses. Even smaller-volume snifters provide enough room for ale enthusiasts to swirl their beer and agitate the volatiles for an improved drinking experience.

Sampler Glasses 
Beer flights are accessible introductions to the heavy hitters on your drink menu. Appeal to larger groups and eager buyers by serving flights at your bar or restaurant.

When considering what style of glass to order, follow the guideline that beer sampler glasses should hold about four ounces apiece to keep your profit margin at the right spot. Depending on the aesthetic of your space, you can’t beat serving a beer flight on a wooden tasting paddle.

Other Styles of Beer Glasses 
While the beer glasses above are designed to bring the flavor and texture of your beer to the forefront, most bars also invest in fun styles to add a whimsical touch for their customers.

One of the more enduring twists on a traditional beer glass is the glass beer boot, or “das boot,” which is a mainstay of beer festivals in the U.S. and around the world. Bartenders appealing to high-minded beer junkies can mix and serve the perfect cocktail or mixed drink in an informative mixer glass with a capacity of 16 ounces.

Invest in Beer Glassware from Chefs’ Toys
When you’re searching for beer glassware that will impress diehard beer fans and survive pour after pour without chipping or deteriorating, trust the beer glasses handpicked by professionals at Chefs’ Toys.

Stock your kitchen with each major type of beer glass to keep customers happy and ordering another round of ale.