The Right Glass for the Right Cocktail
WRITTEN BY REBECCA WELLWOOD
I think we can all admit at one stage (hello teenager-self) we’ve been too eager or lazy and served a cocktail in any old glassware. Maybe it was the only one you could find in the cabinet – or perhaps you didn’t believe it made a difference to the drinking experience when consuming a martini.
But now we know better. You serve a gin gimlet in a coupe and a gin and tonic is better in a gin glass. But the question remains: why?
It comes down to the features of the glass and how it affects the properties of the beverage inside. Read on to discover our cheats guide to what glass to choose for your next drink.
- can be stemmed or stemless
- bulbous body
- flared lip
Tulip glasses capture delicate floral and fruit aromas in your gin. Not to mention they feel comfortable to hold and conveniently fit into the palm of your hand to sip a G&T after a long, hard day. Why not check out our set of four Plumm European Tulip Crystal Gin Glasses?
TRY: use your tulip glass for gin or wine tasting (see our blog post on hosting your own fun gin tasting event at home!), or gins with aromas you want to savour for longer.
STEMMED GIN (COPA) GLASS
- balloon-like shape
- slightly tapered rim
A stemmed gin (or Copa) glass is designed to trap the aromas of the drink. The stem should not be too delicate either. The big bulbous shape holds a large capacity of your favourite gin, tonic, chunks of ice, plus room at the end for a generous garnish.
Tip: collecting ample glassware can become expensive. Don’t feel like you’re missing out if you choose to use a large, red-wine style glass instead. But if you want some luxurious yet dishwasher-friendly gin glasses, we recommend our set of Plumm Crystal Stemmed Gin Glasses available in our Gin Shop.
TRY: Your favourite G&T
- long, delicate stem
- narrow and long, v-like shape
The narrow flute shape helps keep the drink carbonated, so that’s why they are best for sparkling wine or prosecco cocktails. Holding a flute by its stem helps to keep the warm of your hand off the glass and transferring to the drink.
Tip: you can drink carbonated beverages from a wine glass if you prefer, which enhances the flavour experience; however, it will be “flatter” as the amount of bubbles will be impacted.
TRY: French 75
Also known as: tumbler, lowball, or old-fashioned glass
- thick bottoms to withstand muddling
- wide open rim and vertical edges
- enough space for chunks of ice, if called for
The wide rim of a rocks glass allows space for fumes to circle above your cocktail or gin neat. There is plenty of space for large chunks of ice to rapidly cool the drink and a garnish.
- large surface area
- long stem
- inverted cone bowl
The name of the game with martinis is to be kept as cold as possible – stems keep your hot hands away from the rest of your drink, and also are easier to handle straight from the freezer. The bowl shape means vapours and fragrant components can escape which leads to a less boozy first sip compared to a rocks glass.
Also known as: coupette
- large surface area
- broad shallow saucer
The shape helps blend the features of the ingredients into one tasting experience. The wide, open rim increases the surface area, which enhances the sweetness of sugars in the cocktail and the impression of alcoholic volume. A coupe is best for cocktails that are shaken or stirred and served without ice.
TRY: Small Acre Smash
Also known as: collins, delmonico
- narrow cylinder shape
- tall straight sides
- enough space for lots of mixer plus ice
Used for cocktails made up of one quarter alcohol with the rest mixer and topped with ice. Their design brings out sourness in any cocktail and can be further enhanced when serving with a sour garnish such as a lime wedge.
Tip: while similar, Collins and highball glasses are not strictly identical. The names are sometimes used interchangeably, though. Highball glasses are slimmer and shorter, while collins glasses are slightly taller and hold more liquid.
TRY: Finders Summer Fizz
NICK & NORA GLASS
Also known as: princess glass
- stems to keep the cocktail cool
- small, narrow bowl
- a cross between a wine glass and a coupe
While the Nick and Nora appears somewhat to look like a wine glass, it’s instead used for cocktails as they have similar qualities to martini glasses. The small bowl concentrates the cocktail flavour. We recommend the Italian crafted set of Luigi Bormioli Mixology Nick & Nora Glasses available in our Gin Shop.