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Monday, February 14, 2011

How To Choose The Right Glass For Your Beer

Much like how to change a flat tire or Captain Kirk’s middle name, knowing what kind of glass is best for your beer is something a guy should just know.

By Zack Zeigler

There are certain things guys should know. Like how to change a flat tire, who the reigning champions are in all four major sports, what the best quotes are in a wide range of guy movies, and how to deal with a hangover at work. Also on that list? Knowing which kinds of glass goes with which kind of beer.

Now, you’re not going to not have a beer if you don’t have the correct glass for it. And if a bartender serves one up in the wrong glass, you won’t haughtily send it back. And even though the kind of glass in which a beer is served can affect its taste, the fact is that you probably wouldn’t even notice. But let’s be honest — utility doesn’t always play a big role in guy knowledge.

So whether you drink Guinness, Bud Light, or absurdly expensive specialty beers, here’s what you need to know.

Pint glass: The classic. They’re cheap to produce, are great for number of beer styles — practically all of them — and come in a 16-ounce tumbler or 20-ounce Imperial. (Most bars feature the tumbler.)
Beers: Guinness, Heineken, Budweiser, Coors, Blue Moon Belgian White

Weizen (Wheat beer glass): The narrow bottom and flared top help produce a thick, fluffy head that emphasizes the aroma of the hops (hops are there for flavor and stability) in Wheat Ales, Weizenbocks, Belgian Whites, and German Hefeweizens.
Beers: Saranac Amber Wheat, Flying Dog in Heat Wheat, Sam Adams Cherry Wheat, Sierra Nevada Wheat Beer, Bud Light Golden Wheat

Pilsner glass: This tall, slender, tapered glass promotes head retention (heh heh) and highlights the beer’s color, clarity, and carbonation. Use it with Blonde ales, Belgians, Saisons, German Lagers, low-alcohol beers, and, oddly, Pilsners.
Beers: Pacifico, Heineken, Foster’s Lager, Labatt Blue, Tecate

Flute glass: If you like German Pilsners, Weizenbock, Vienna Lagers, American Wild Ale, or beers with a fruity flavor, this is your glass. The narrow shape preserves carbonation, highlights color, and brings out the aroma.
Beers: Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager, Samuel Adams Noble Pil, Carlsberg, Dos Equis Amber Lager, Beck’s

Goblet or Chalice: They’re big, bowl-shaped, and perfect for downing thick, malty beer. (A goblet is a thinner, longer-stemmed version of the chalice.) Both have wide-mouth openings ideal for chugging Belgian IPA, Quad, Tripel, and Dubbel-style brews after you slay a dragon or crash a Harry Potter theme party.
Beers: Stone Cali-Belgique, Piraat Ale, Wild Devil, De Ranke XX Bitter,Raging Bitch Belgian-Style IPA

Mug or Stein: These hold a lot of volume, so consume your Belgian IPA, Weizenbock, or Dunkelweizen at a healthy pace to avoid warm beer. Mugs are thick, sometimes dimpled, and fun as hell to cheers since they won’t shatter in your hand. Steins are more ornate, have a lid, and are usually made from ceramics, earthenware, or stoneware.
Beers: Fat Tire Amber Ale, Yuengling, Brooklyn Lager, Killian’s Irish Red, Black & Tans

Tulip glass: Similar to a flute glass but with a thicker stem, the tulip has a flared mouth that makes for nice head formation while the bulbous body helps enhance volatiles (stuff in beer that creates its aroma). Tulips are most compatible with American Wild Ales, Belgian IPAs, and Belgian Pale Ales.
Beers: Dogfish Head 90 Minute Imperial IPA, Stone Ruination IPA, Hop Wallop, 120 Minute IPA, Hop Stoopid