Glassware Every Home Bar Needs
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Last week we talked about the tools we needed to have on hand to make just about any cocktail from home. Next up in the at home bar 101 we're going to talk about the glassware you need. Fun fact it's not martini and margarita glasses.
Cocktail glasses can have multiple purposes. Since I like sticking with the bar theme that less is more, we're going to treat our glassware the same. While this can be a topic of serious bar discussion, I am narrowing down your glassware to needing only 4 types of glasses. *I will note I did not include wine or champagne glasses since we are working on the idea of making cocktails, and we won't reach for those for this purpose. If you don't drink wine or champagne simply on its own, then clearly you would not need them on your bar. The four glasses are the highball, pint, coupe, and rocks glasses. Maybe you already have a few of these on hand as they are popular cocktail glasses. However, before we have you buy glassware for your bar cart lets learn why and when you will need them.
Highball 8-12oz - I imagine you've heard of either a highball or a collins glass. Similar in style but a collins holds 2 more ounces, however not necessary to own both of them. Their purpose? The use of a highball is great for a drink that needs a lot of ice and a lot of mixer. We typically call these tall (or long) drinks but don't let that fool you into thinking they are not strong. Think drinks like Gin & Tonic, PIMM's cup, Dark & Stormy, Cape Codder, & Cube Libre.
Pint 16oz - You more than likely have a pint glass lying around from college. Perfect for serving beer but even better for cocktails. A pint glass is used for those drinks lighter on alcohol content but full of delicious flavor. Think beer cocktails, ginger beer, juice, and tonics. Look for pint glasses true to the 16oz size or even mason jars that can hold the shared amount. Drinks would include; Bloody Mary, Shandy, Michelada, & Party Punch.
Coupe 4-6oz - The coupe is becoming ever so popular again as a go to free for all cocktail holder. Originally a champagne glass from the 30s it's being repurposed (bubbly just doesn't stay bubbly in large rimmed glasses folks) as the perfect cocktail server for small and powerful cocktails. If it's going in a shaker, then strained over no ice, it's served in a coupe. Kick those martini glasses to the side, this coupe will do the trick and more. Think Dirty Martinis, Manhattans, Daiquiris, and Sidecars.
Rocks 6-10oz - A rocks glass, maybe known to you as a whiskey glass or low ball, it is the most versatile out of the glassware. I call it the little black dress of barware. Even though the name gives way to drinks diluted on ice don't be afraid to throw a bourbon neat in it as well. Where a coupe is home to those drinks made in a shaker, a rocks is like the one pot meal of the clan. A drink in a rocks glass is typically made in the glass it's self from start to finish. I say typically because we might break a few of those rules with our less is more bar. That's a story for another day. What goes in a rocks? Old Fashion, Mint Julep, Margarita, & Moscow Mule.
Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in the details of margarita glasses & copper mule mugs. I promise with these four glasses every drink will be served with just as much pomp and circumstance. You may even find yourself leaning more towards one glass over all of them, or use them equally. Some bars use only rocks & highballs, I personally pull for coupes & rocks. As you learn your home bar and what you enjoy, you'll find the right standard for you. I recommend starting out your bar with 2 of each glass. As you get to know your home bar and who you shake for, add in more of what you seem to be using. This helps keep you from having to dust unused glasses and keeps your bar light in space.
We've covered the tools and the barware, next we will be talking what to stock your bar with. What spirits I perfer, what I think you can do with out, and a few essentials for making your own flavored spirtis. In the comments below tell me what your favorite spirit is and the brand you use!