Whiskey is one of those drinks whose experience depends on the glassware you use for the drink. Even the best kinds of aged whiskey perform poorly when paired with the wrong glasses. On the converse, a terrible bottle of whiskey, if there is ever such a thing, will taste quite well with the right kinds of glasses.
Are you curious about some of the most fascinating facts about whiskey glasses? Here are some of the facts you need to know about whiskey glasses, whether you are a whiskey connoisseur or are just learning about whiskey as a casual enthusiast!
1. Different Cultures Have Contributed To Unique Whiskey Glass Shapes
The use of whiskey glasses has changed over the years depending on the cultures. While whiskey traces its history to Scottish and Irish claims, one of the earliest recordings of whiskey containers is the wooden quaich drinking bowls of Lindores Abbey in Scotland.
Since then, whiskey glasses have changed in different societies to incorporate the style of the people in that community. In fact, even distillers and manufacturers in the US have created an iconic bullet whiskey glass to incorporate the American love for bourbon and guns!
2. Whiskey Glass Shapes Affect the Taste and Aroma of Your Drink
The type of glass you use to drink your whiskey can affect its smell and taste. Generally, glasses with wider diameters disperse the smell away from your nose, while those with narrow openings focus the smell on your nose. If you want a richer aroma from your whiskey, you’d better use a narrow glass.
On the other hand, glasses with a wider base help enhance the taste of whiskey. Such glasses reduce the tang of the alcohol to help you appreciate the different tastes when drinking your whiskey.
If the temperature of your whiskey is an important factor, consider getting longer glasses. These will ensure that your hand temperature does not affect the temperature of the whiskey in the glass.
3. The Effect Of Crystal On Whiskey Glasses
Whiskey enthusiasts have always been at loggerheads on whether crystal affects the taste and texture of whiskey. For most whiskey connoisseurs, crystal is preferable to glass due to its durability. Crystal whiskey glasses are completely unlikely to chip when in use.
When it comes to taste and texture, the differences between crystal and glass are imperceptible to the regular whiskey consumer. Nonetheless, many drinkers argue that drinking from crystal has a richer taste than regular glass. Try both of them out to find out which one you would prefer!
4. Whiskey Glass Conventions In Whiskey Appreciation
When taking whiskey, there are four main options to consider. These are whiskey neat, whiskey on the rocks, whiskey on water (or the bourbon and branch), and whiskey cocktails. The kind of glass to use differs for these different whiskey-drinking methods.
If you enjoy your whiskey neat and want to enjoy the different whiskey aromas, then go for a short glass with a narrow diameter. A slightly longer glass with a thick base will be excellent for whiskey on the rocks and whiskey with water since glass is a poor heat conductor.
The glass you use for cocktails will wholly depend on the type of cocktail. Generally, always opt for a longer glass to have enough space for all the components of the drink and its condiments.
5. Whiskey Glasses As Collectibles
Many whiskey enthusiasts enjoy collecting different types of glasses as collectibles. The glasses can serve as a reminder of one of the fun experiences you had drinking with friends. Others have a unique aesthetic effect, such as bullet glasses. Look for vintage options at your local vendor to build a rich collection of whiskey glasses. These can be quite pricy but tend to appreciate over time.
6. The Classic Must-Have Glencairn Whiskey Glass
When building a collection of whiskey glasses, you would be remiss to miss a Glencairn Whiskey Glass. The Glencairn glass is a unique glass, common among many whiskey aficionados. It is virtually impossible to go for a whiskey tasting and not find one Glencairn glass.
The reason this glass is quite popular is its unique design. The glass has a tapered top which allows you to appreciate the aroma of the whiskey. Its bulging body increases the field of view, which helps you get a closer look at your whiskey. What more could you possibly need?
Tips On Caring For Your Whiskey Glasses
Taking care of your whiskey glass goes a long way to ensuring it serves you better and for longer. The following tips will help you get the most from your glasses:
- Always hand wash the glasses to avoid damage in the dishwasher.
- Never use harsh chemicals and cleaning agents, as they may attack the glass and affect the taste of your whiskey.
- After washing your glasses, dry them with a soft cloth. Most glasses are susceptible to scratching when you use a rough cloth.
- Always store your glasses in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
Whiskey glasses play an important role in whiskey appreciation. As we have noted, the taste of your whiskey depends on more than the type of whiskey itself. Choosing the right glasses for how you want to take your whiskey will affect your appreciation of the drink. Remember this the next time you buy a new set of whiskey glasses.