Most people don’t fully understand the significance of using the right type of glassware for a particular style of beer. It’s more than just marketing at play here.
The moment a beer is poured, it’s color, aroma and taste changes.
To appreciate the bouquet of flavors, you must select appropriate, clean glassware. Head retention is altered by the type of glass used – a glass with a healthy head will promote a better tasting brew. Dirty glassware can ruin a perfectly poured pint.
It’s best to stick to the simple chart I’ve posted above – the name of the game is head retention so choose wisely and enjoy a perfect pint! (click on the image for a better view)
Glassware choices are limited in India but you can still find them online, some brewpubs offer glassware for sale and better yet try and pick some up from abroad, if possible. This has worked for me and I know have a growing collection. Here’s a sampling of what I currently own:
Pictured above from L to R – Mug, Mug, Pilsner, Pilsner, Hefeweizen, Wit, Irish Pint, Tulip, Balloon, Teku, Goblet.
Essential Glassware to Own:
- Standard Mug – Any Beer
- Pilsner – Pilsners/Lagers/Kolsch
- Hefeweizen Glass – Wheat/Wits
- Irish Pint Glass – IPA’s, Ales, Stouts
- Tulip – Specialty Beers (Tripels/Dubels,Saisons), Ales
- Balloon – Lagers, Ales
- Teku -IPAs
- Goblet – Belgian Speciality Beers
- Snifter (Stronger/Robust Ales/Porters/Barley Wines)
Hold on a minute! You’ve got the perfect brew, the perfect glass but now you’ve got to learn the art of pouring a perfect pint. If your bartender is doing it wrong, step up to the plate and show him how it’s done! Don’t settle for less. Remember the 2 finger rule – you need at least an inch of head or 2 fingers worth.
Pouring the Perfect Pint
Lagers, Pilsners & Ales
Source: Heineken. Click to Enlarge.
Stout – For all you Guinness lovers, this one is for you.
Source: Guinness. Click to Enlarge.
Weiss Beer – Make sure you swirl that bottle to get the perfect head.
Step 1 – The normal 45-degree pour till 3/4 full.
Step 2 – Give the bottle a swirl.
Step 3 – Pour directly over the glass.
Step 4 – (optional) – Add a slice of lemon or orange (Belgian weiss) and serve.
Famous Beer Glass manufacturers
Have you ever noticed this logo on the side of your beer glass at one of the brewpubs here or on beer branded glassware you bought or received as a promo from a brewery?
It’s from the famous German company Sahm.
Take a look at their products on their website: http://www.sahm.de/en/categories/beer/products
These are definitely the best Craft Beer glasses in the market. Speigelau from Germany have 3 different types of glassware – Stout, IPA and Wit/Hefeweizen. These glasses were designed in collaboration with some of the best Craft breweries in America.
The IPA glass was designed by Sam Calagione from Dogfish Head and Ken Grossman from Sierra Nevada – two of America’s top Craft Breweries. With a wide mouth and narrow stem that has plenty of nucleation sites in the form of rings around the stem (encourages formation of bubbles/carbonation), you can be sure that this glass gives you better froth stability and ultimately enhance aromas, flavor and mouthfeel in the process.
Speigelau’s Sout and Wheat Beer glasses are equally well designed to promote optimal taste, aroma, mouthfeel and head retention.
We put the IPA glass to the test at Big Brewsky- a local brewpub. We poured an IPA into a regular Beer mug and the same batch into a Speigelau IPA glass. Using the same pour technique, we immediately found that the head on the Speigelau was more stable and we could see a lot more carbonation especially around the nucleation sites. Without a doubt, the bouquet and flavor of the IPA in the Speigelau was far superior.
Next up the Stout glass. Once again the Speigelau glass excelled in terms of really pulling together the rich coffee, chocolate and roasted malt aromas.
The Hefeweizen/Wit glass also worked remarkably well giving you a nice collar of foam and all the aromatics you would come to expect from a Hefeweizen/Wit.
These glasses don’t come cheap – an assorted set of 4 glasses will set you back Rs. 5,400. available on Amazon India. A set of 2 IPA glasses sells for around Rs. 2,830.
If you’ve got the money, then invest in these glasses – they are truly worth the investment!
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