Glassware: Beer Glass Guide

How many types of beer glasses are there? A lot apparently. Want to know which is the best for your drink? Well here’s a Beer Glass Guide just for you!

It is a pastime for many, sipping beer on a hot summer’s day or enjoying the flavours in a beer garden. Or just cracking open a can of your favourite beer when you’re watching the footie. But did you know how many different types of beer glasses there actually are? Some will even enhance the flavours of your drink, while others will make the experience more enjoyable. Do you know what the perfect glass is for your beer? Never been uncertain again with this Beer Glass Guide below!

Beer Glass Guide
Nucleated Beer Glasses

Nucleated Beer Glass small

This is the most popular type of beer glass. With small pits to enhance the head of the beer and allow the gas to be more readily released. There are two types of Nucleated Beer glasses: laser etched, offers optimum nucleation, and the second, printed nucleated base which allows companies to brand their glasses.




CE Mark Glasses

CE Mark beer glass small

CE stamp replaced the crown government mark on pint glasses which says the glass adheres to UK licensing laws. 1/3 and 2/3 are being introduced to pubs for greater flexibility in serving. The CE stamp is a required mark for draught beer services.




Imperial Pint Glass

Tulip int glass small

Mostly used to serve Guinness and other stouts, this Tulip shaped glass is a classic pub glass. Favourite for its looks, not for its beer tasting benefits, these glasses are made from tough material; another reason why pubs love using them.




Nonic Beer Glasses

Nonic pint small

This iconic glass is used commonly in pubs due to its stackable design and durability. The bulge in the shape has many benefits asides from the stackable side; it also provides great grip on a condensation covered glass.




American Beer Glasses

American Beer Glass Small

Used for serving a US pint, which is 160z-14oz, the American beer glass has a smooth frame and has become as iconic as the Nonic and the Imperial glass. It is used in bars and pubs all around the world and varies in size. It used for serving draught beer in the UK.




Beer Mugs

Beer Mug small

The traditional handled tankard. Though sometimes wavers in and out of fashion, this mug is still popular today. It is classic and British, most known for dimpled sides and made from sturdy glass. Because of that, they are extremely popular at beer festival, especially at Oktoberfest.




Beer Stein

Beer Stein Small

Originally ceramic, these beer mugs are the epitome of German beer drinking. They are the mug with a lid, to keep the bugs away and so perfect for outdoor drinking. The term stein is generally applied to handled beer glasses. Another mug great for Oktoberfest.





Masskrug small

Made to hold 1 litre of beer, this enormous beer mug is especially popular at beer festival. The word Masskrug literally translates to 1 litre beer mug.






tankard small

Like the beer stein, the tankard used to be made with silver or pewter. Nowadays, you will find it made of glass. They vary in shape and style but all have the handle, making them a tankard.




Beer Snifters

beer snifters small

These are grand bulbous stemmed glasses that have narrowed openings to concentrate the aromas flooding your nose. Hence the name ‘snifter’. Great for beer tasting.




Tulip Beer Glasses

tulip-beer-glass small

Traditionally Belgium beer glasses, these elegant Tulip beer glasses have a stem, a round a bowl and flared rim. The narrow neck is designed to capture and concentrate the aromas of your beer or ale, and the fluted rim helps with head retention. No doubt, the Dutch knew what they were doing with this beer glass to enhance your appreciation of beer.




Pokal Beer Glasses

pokal glass small

They have tall slim bowls situated on short stems, but it does differ from Europe to the US. In Europe, Pokal glasses have either bulbous or flat bases, while in the US, they have a more tapered base.




Beer Goblets and Beer Chalices

goblet beer glass small

Perfect for serving German bocks. Both are thick and strong in construction with a large opening and a huge capacity for beer. The goblet is a generic word used to describe a stemmed glass.




Schooner Beer Glass

schooner beer glass small

Similar to the goblet, but can hold even larger volumes of beer. Found in the US, these glasses are strong and made from a durable glass, making them perfect for bars and restaurants.




Thistle Beer Glass

thistle glass small

Beautiful and unique in shape, this glass is great for serving Scotch ale. It has an exaggerated stemmed tulip shape. It’s design, a large head and a bulbous bowl help capture and enhance the aromas for the drinker. Its shape also represents the national flower of Scotland.




Wheat Beer Glasses

wheat glass small

Designed for German wheat beers, this glass has a elongated shape from the typical tulip glass shape. The bulbous top is perfect for containing a large head on the beer, while the base is slightly flared to trap any yeast for a better drinking experience.




Pilsner Beer Glasses

Pilsner glass small

German wheat beers and Belgium beers choose this glass as the perfect one to drink because of its elegant shape and the way it emphasizes the best of beer. Though it holds less than other beer glasses, it does make it great for serving bottle beer. It has a tall and slender frame and broad top to maintain the beer’s head. It’s similar to the Pilsner but with more of an hour-glass figure.




Willi Becher Glasses

Willi becher glass small

In the same way the Nonic and the Tulip are iconic British beer glasses, the Willi Becher is the German equivalent. It has a conical shape and narrows at the rim to concentrate the aromas of your beer.




Strange Beer Glasses

strange glass small

Similar to the standard Highball glass, it is used in Germany for serving beer. It has a tall, slim frame and traditionally holds up to 200ml. Similar to many other glasses it gets forgotten. The word strange translates into ‘stick’ and it is common to serve a ‘stick of beer’.




Highball Beer Glasses

highball beer glass small

There is practically no difference between this and a regular Highball glass to serve cocktails in. They are easier to produce than most beer glasses and so are used in pubs because of that and they’re easy to store.




Yard of Ale

Yard of Ale small

The classic Yard of Ale is a true test of man’s prowess and is used in competitions all over the world to see who can drink a yard of ale (1.42 litres) the quickest. This glass is usually accompanied by a stand or a rack, as it has no flat base or stand for itself.




Beer Boot

Giant Glass Beer Boot small

This glass was popularised in the film ‘Beerfest’ when it was referred to as ‘Das Boot’. Better known in Germany as ‘Bierstiefel’ the tradition of drinking from a boot is believed to have derived from the military. This vessel is used in the ‘Beerfest’ drinking game where challengers will have to drink the entire contents without spilling it down themselves – the winner is whoever got least wet. There is a tip to drinking from this boot however; keep the toe pointing down, as when it’s pointing up, air will enter the toe and the contents will rush out, soaking the drinker.



Beer Taster Glasses

Sampler Beer Glasses smallKnown as ‘pony glasses’, beer taster glasses can actually be any small glass as they provide a small volume for you to simply sample the beer. Used in brewing competitions and tasting sessions, this glass can be practically any shape or style, but the conical glass is a favourite.




Specialist Beer Glasses

Coachman small

Like the sampler glasses, specialist beer glasses are no restricted by shape and are usually produced by a particular brand of beer to accentuate the properties of their drink. Or they are made specifically that part of the world for the customs and culture. A famous one to mention is the coachman’s glass; created by Pauwel Kwak to be carried by coach drivers in the 19th century, you will see it most in Belgian filled with Kwak beer. Any branded beer glass that’s unique to that brand can be classed as a specialist beer glass and would have been produced with the beverage in mind.


Novelty Beer Glasses

Novelty Beer Glass smallLast but not least we have the novelty beer glasses. These glasses have no restriction of shape, style and size. The most popular novelty glasses are sexy beer glasses or skull shaped vessel. These always make perfect gifts for beer lovers.  Traditional glasses such as the nonic are over-sized, sometimes up to as large as 5 pints. Novelty glasses are over-sized, comical or themed such as tiki or Hawaiian themed glassware. These are best for parties or gifts.

We at Drinkstuff offer a wide variety of beer glasses, whether you’re decking out a pub or your home bar, or even preparing for a party. We have a range that goes from Nonic to Novelty to Horns to disposable plastic cups. As you can see, there are plenty of varieties out there and it’s all about finding the right glass for the right beer and occasion.

Chosen which beer glass you need to serve your beer in? Check out for all your glassware needs!

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