The Everything Guide To Glassware

the everything guide to glassware

Presentation Can Be Everything!

In whatever bar you go to, bartenders can be very choosy about how they serve up their cocktails. There are a lot of types of glassware at your disposal, and mixologists don’t always use the same type of glasses for the same cocktails.

So that poses a question: Does glassware really make the cocktail? Well in this everything guide to glassware, we’re going to breakdown of the different types of glasses and why we use them to serve our cocktails.

The Everything Guide to Glassware


Rocks – Old Fashioned – Lowball

The Rocks glass, also known as an Old Fashioned or Lowball, is a short glass that generally holds around 4 to 12 ounces of liquid. It is a very versatile class of glassware as bartenders use them to both build and serve up cocktails. Whiskey is one of the most common spirits served in a rocks glass. The rocks glass became synonymous with the Old Fashioned cocktail, hence why it is often referred to as an Old Fashioned glass.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Maple-Bourbon Smash]


Highball – Collins – Delmonico

This tall, cylindrical cocktail glass family has slightly different variations in their shape. The Delmonico is the shortest and has a slight flare at the rim, the Collins is slightly more narrow and tall, and the Highball is a little wider but shorter than the Collins. These glasses were designed to keep cocktails cold and to help hold their carbonation. Highballs make the perfect glasses for tall cocktails that are served over ice, or have some form of carbonation.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Gin Rickey ]


Nick and Nora

The elegant looking Nick & Nora glass was named after the main characters from the Thin Man film series. This tulip glass is often used as an alternative to the Martini and Coupe glasses for delightful presentation. The Nick and Nora is a great glass to serve up martinis, manhattans, and rob roys.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Rob Roy]



Originally designed as a Champagne glass, the coupe’s curved shape helps prevent cocktails from spilling out. Cocktails in this glass are served neat, meaning no ice, to show off their clarity. Mixologists tend to use this glass in place of a traditional martini glass for presentation purposes.

[make a cocktail using this glass: The Ice Queen]



Probably the most iconic of cocktail glassware, the Cocktail glass vary in size and slope. The glass’ shape has an interesting flaw. Cocktails in this V-shaped glass are easily spilled mid-transport, so it’s best not to fill the cocktail to the top. The cocktail glass has become synonymous with the number one cocktail served in it, the Martini, but note there is no real such thing as a separate Martini Glass.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Cosmopolitan ]


Champagne Flute

This tall, slender, stemmed glass was designed to help offset the quickness that Champagne loses its carbonation. It is typically only used to serve straight Champagne or Champaign-based cocktails, like Bellinis and Mimosas.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Kir Royale]


Julep Cup – Mule Mug

These iconic metal cups are used to serve up Julep and Mule cocktails. The metal cups are supposed to affect the temperature of the cocktail, keeping it colder longer. Julep cups are traditionally made of Sterling or Pewter and are a standard tall, cylindrical shape; while Mule mugs are made of Copper and are typically round but can vary in shape.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Mint Julep ]



This festively curved stemmed glass is named after the classic cocktail that is traditionally served in it. The shape of the margarita glass is modeled after the Coupe, adding presentation and functionality to the glass. While it’s often used for frozen cocktails from Margaritas to Daiquiris, it is common to serve margaritas in other glasses as well.

[make a cocktail using this glass: Classic Margarita ]


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