Choosing Whisky Glasses

 In whisky

While Irish tradition may sing of whisky in the jar, in the modern day we are far more spoilt for choice in how we chose to enjoy our favourite whiskies. Sure, alcohol laden jam jars have made a resurgence in recent years, and although we don’t drink shame at Whisky Nips, we strongly believe that the right whisky deserves the right whisky glasses.

To the long term whisky lover the notion of glassware effecting the way we enjoy our drink may be a given; but to the growing aficionado, the fledgling novice, the promising protégé, and the budding whisky connoisseur, the idea that your choice in whisky glass is more important than simple visual appeal may seem daunting. After all, you’ve only just managed to get your head around the differences between single malt and single grain scotch whisky and now suddenly you must learn the names of different whisky glasses and their shapes?

But does your choice in whisky glasses REALLY make a difference?

While many would argue that the best whisky glass is the one you’re drinking from, in an age of choice, and plenty of them, it would be a shame not to explore one’s options. After all, think of the expertise, the artistry, and most of the all, the sheer time taken to produce the elixir of life only for it to be poured and served into a coffee mug. Irish coffee anyone? While on the surface this may sound like pretentious whisky snobbery, the preference for specific whisky glasses does have some merit. Ethanol evaporation, aeration, aroma dynamics, and temperature buffering, all seem like over complications when choosing the right whisky glass, but fear not, for we have distilled the variety of choices down into our top 4 picks and the reasons why we picked them.

Our Top 4 Whisky Glasses

Choosing Whisky Glasses

The Old Fashion

Considered by many to be the standard glass of choice for serving whisky.  This wide open thick glass is excellent for serving scotch the rocks using ice or whisky rocks, or for mixing in other ingredients such as Coke or making a general whisky-based cocktail. The old fashion, as it’s name suggests is a timeless whisky glass and perfect for convincing yourself you’re Donald Draper.

Glencairn Crystal Whisky GlassThe Glencairn

The classic. Designed to replicate the qualities of whisky testing glasses found in laboratories and whisky labs worldwide, the Glencairn boasts an iconic shape, intentionally designed with aroma and temperature in mind. The unique shape of the glass ensures that the aroma is well presented, avoiding the harshness of evaporating ethanol, allowing all whisky lovers to truly appreciate the complexities of their drink, through both smell and taste.  The ergonomic design also prevents your hand from warming up the glass and therefor your whisky. Don’t forget to swirl, so you can comment on the legs and impress your friends with your knowledge of all things whisky.

NEAT Whisky GlassThe NEAT Whisky Glass

Science and whisky. The perfect blend? Humans only detect 5 key tastes yet we can detect over 5000 distinct aromas. With such an emphasis on smell it is little wonder the impact that smell has on our enjoyment of whisky. While many whisky glass designs had aroma in mind, the NEAT (Naturally Engineering Aroma Technology) whisky glass takes aroma wrangling to a new level. Beginning with science and not style, the engineers at NEAT have developed the ultimate glass for removing harsh ethanol aromas, making it perfect for new drinkers and those who truly wish to utilise their olfactory senses.

Norlan twin wall whisky glassThe Norlan

This double layered designed glass was designed with aeration in mind. When swirled the internal intrusions of the Norlan create a standing wave shape, increasing the surface to air ration of the whisky allowing the easier evaporation of ethanol. Secondarily, the design of the inner layer of glass focuses the aroma of the whisky at the nose, while diffusing ethanol away. A great bonus of the double layer design is the insulation effect of the air between the layers, allowing a full grip on the glass without warming up your whisky.

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