Does using whiskey glasses make a difference? Let’s put it this way: would you drink coffee out of an ordinary plastic cup? Of course not! Whiskey glasses enhance the overall drinking experience of whiskey and bring a genuine appreciation for the lovely spirit it highlights.
Creating a Whiskey Sensory Experience
It helps to understand why whiskey glasses help bring out the best of your whiskey by comparing it to wine glasses. As mentioned in previous blogs on the importance of the correct wine glasses being used for specific wines, the same is valid for whiskey glasses. For example, would you drink your red wine in a white wine glass? You would say no if you want to taste and smell the full-bodied wine to its greatest potential. The same is true for whiskey. Imbibing is a sensory experience that is made better by the perfect glass.
Let’s take a moment and appreciate whiskey. Whiskey’s aroma and flavor can capture many different notes. Some of these delightful and classic whiskey notes are oak, spice, vanilla, and smells of smokiness. Nosing your whiskey plays a significant role in understanding and appreciating how it was distilled.
This is because your sense of smell plays a prominent role in your overall taste experience. You are not able to capture this experience in a shot glass due to its size and shape. But you need not worry! Glass.com is here to break down the different whiskey glasses that can contribute to your drinking experience.
The Glencairn Glass
The Glencairn glass can do this for you perfectly. The Glencairn whiskey glass features a tulip-shaped bowl that concentrates the aroma to the rim and allows you to enjoy all the aroma a finely aged whiskey has to offer. The Glencairn glass also allows for swirling to open up the aroma and flavor even more. It’s an ideal glass for slowly sipping your whiskey to appreciate its taste more fully than, for instance, a shot of whiskey.
This is a glass you might come across at a whiskey tasting because it provides for the fully engaged sensory experience of whiskey. It is perfect for single malt whiskeys. It captures the aroma a single malt might amplify, such as woody and oaky notes or floral and fruity notes. With all these unique flavors, you are sure to want to sip them out of a Glencairn glass.
The Old-Fashioned Glass
While the Glencairn is a classic glass for whiskey, the old-fashioned is as well. The old-fashioned glass, also known as the whiskey tumbler, is a short tumbler with a heavy base and a wide brim. This glass is ideal for enhancing drinking experiences of whiskey neat, on the rocks, or whiskey cocktails. The great thing about this glass is that you can serve the whiskey in all these ways and still experience the oaky aroma of the whiskey poured.
A specific feature of this glass is its hefty, thick base, which prevents the glass from changing temperature from the person’s hand. This helps maintain the flavor and taste of the whiskey that a temperature change might otherwise jeopardize. You can also make classic whiskey cocktails like the old-fashioned in this glass. Finally, the whiskey glass’s thick bottom makes muddling possible that would not be possible in other drinking glasses. All these features go to show that whiskey glasses are ideal for creating a superior whiskey-drinking experience.
The Neat Glass
What began as a glassblowing factory mistake became a sensational whiskey glass for drinking and nosing alike. Because nosing is so crucial to the experience of tasting whiskey, this glass was able accommodate nosing without amplifying the harsh vapors of ethanol. This glass is a short, bulbous glass that almost resembles a fishbowl.
The creation allows drinkers to nose the whiskey without the offensive burning smell of alcohol which leaves behind only the pleasant and more nuanced notes of whiskey that you want to smell. This special glass shows that whiskey glasses make a difference when drinking whiskey, mostly because aroma plays a big part in the tasting experience.
To answer the original question- yes, whiskey glasses are necessary. Ultimately, the best way to appreciate your whiskey is to indulge in a whiskey glass. Imagine buying expensive whiskey that has been aged at just the right temperature for years just to drink it out of an ordinary water glass. Make the experience a proper sensory immersion with the whiskey glass of your choice, whether that is a Glencairn, old-fashioned, or any other variety. Glass.com offers classic whiskey glasses for your enjoyment. Take a look and let us know what your favorite whiskey glasses are!