The shape and design of the glass can enhance the beer and even direct it to certain positions on the tongue so specific flavour characteristics are highlighted. For instance beer sipped from a tall glass that is tapered at the rim will flow to the middle and back of the tongue, emphasizing sharp and bitter flavours - this shape will also concentrate aromas.

by Jane Peyton - Beer Sommelier, There's A Beer For That

Chalice/Goblet

They are wide rimmed bowls on a long stem that turn beer drinking into a ritual. The design allows a big foamy head and complex aromas to develop. 

Try a Chalice with these styles:

- Pale ale
- Strong Ale
- Stout & Porter

Dimpled Barrel


A thick dimpled glass mug with a handle. The mouth is larger than the base and this promotes gulping so the beer will hit the back of the tongue first where the bitter taste receptors are. Any sweetness in the beer (from the malts) will not register unless the beer is sipped. 

Try a Dimpled Barrel with these styles: 

- Pale ale
- Dark ale
- Lager

English Pint


There are two versions - one is straight sided, the other has a bulge in the top third and is often called a nonic. Both have a wider mouth than base and this releases the volatile aroma and flavour in the beer. The shape of the glass promotes big gulps so the beer makes contact with the bitter taste buds first. To get the rest of the flavour in the beer requires sipping.

Try an English pint glass with these styles: 

- Pale Ale
- Dark Ale
- Stout & porter

Flute


A tall, narrow, delicate elegant glass on a long stem perfect for lighter, sparkling beers. The narrow tapered rim directs the aromas straight to the nose and the shape promotes sipping which means the sweetness, effervescence, and acidity are enhanced. 

Try a Flute with these styles: 

- Strong ale
- Sour beer
- Lager

Footed Pilsner 


Tall and tapered like an inverted isosceles triangle narrower at the bottom than the top. It shows off the colour and carbonation of the beer and as the vessel's mouth is not too wide it maintains a beer head. There will be a nucleation point on the inside bottom of the glass so the CO2 has something to bounce off and then rise up the glass.

Try a Footed Pilsner with these styles: 

- Lager

Snifter 


This style is sometimes called a balloon due to its shape - bulbous and narrowing to the top which enhances the volatile aromas. They sit on a stem and a foot and make the drinking of beer into an elegant ritual. The shape makes it easy to swirl the beer to release the aromas. 

Try a Snifter with these styles: 

- Strong ale
- Sour beer

Stein


Ornate Bavarian beer vessels intricately decorated ceramic, earthenware or stoneware. They do little for enhancing the beer but look great! Some steins have lids so aromatic beers can waft out each it is opened. 

Try a Stein with these styles: 

- Lager
- Sour beer

Tulip


This has a bulbous bottom on a stem and foot. The balloon shape captures volatile aromas and the flared mouth retains a foamy head. This glassware makes the beer easy to swirl so the aromas are released. 

Try a Tulip with these styles: 

- Pale Ale
- Strong Ale
- Sour Beer
- Stout & Porter

Weizen


Tall, slender and flared at the top ideal for accentuating the cloudy appearance of a wheat beer and for a voluptuous head formation. With wheat beers the banana and clove aromas are an essential part of the beer and the solid head retains those volatile aromas. 

Try a Weizen with these styles: 

- Wheat beer
- Lager

Wine Glass


Wine glasses are on long stems and come in a variety of shapes from bowls to tulip shaped. An ideal wine glass for beer is one with a tapered mouth that releases aromas. Although a wine glass is not a legal measure for draught beer in Britain, there is no rule against using them for bottled beer - especially at a dinner table. 

Any style of aromatic beer is good from a wine glass.


Feeling inspired? Head over to John Lewis to view their gorgeous glassware collection, and get the most out of your beer.

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