Glassware Matters

The IPA Draft glass by Speigelau, co-designed by Dogfish Head and Sierra Nevada.

The IPA Draft glass by Speigelau, co-designed by Dogfish Head and Sierra Nevada.

Size does matter – as does shape. Handcrafted micro beer deserves to be served in its proper glassware. Too often I find myself entering taprooms or brewpubs and every style is served in a 16 oz shaker pint – From Hefeweizens to Pilsners to Lambics. This not only does a disservice to the beer, but it deprives the customer of the optimal drinking experience. Proper glassware serves a function and it’s not just aesthetic. Whether the purpose is to retain effervescence, or focus aromas, it’s important to offer proper glassware with a trained staff.

And regarding Saké, most people have only experienced rough, warm table saké (futsu-shu) in small ceramic glasses. A good, well crafted Ginjo or Diaginjo is more properly presented slightly chilled, like a white wine, in glass stemware. Yes, stemware. This way the nuances and aromas of the saké can be enjoyed without the warming effect of ones hand.

There is excellent industry server training available. The Cicerone training offers a Certified Beer Server training program. And the Master Brewers Association offers Beer Steward Training courses.

In the last decade the quality and diversity of microbeer has been improving and expanding rapidly. It’s time that glassware and server training reflects this. And with that, my friends, I raise my Belgium tulip glass to you!