11 Types Of Drinking Glasses You Should Know

Have you ever noticed the many different types of drinking glasses? You've probably realized that cocktails and other alcoholic beverages all seem to have certain glasses in which they are served. This is why it's important to understand their uses.

You don't want to be embarrassed by serving drinks in the wrong glass. Understanding the differences between the many different types of glasses might seem overwhelming at first, there is no need to worry. We will list each type of glass along with the beverages that are to be served in them.

A rocks glass with whiskey and ice on the table, 11 Types Of Drinking Glasses You Should Know

1. Tumbler

When you think about tumblers, images of travel cups and personalized designs may come to mind. This is because the travel design has increased in popularity in the past several years.

A glass of water

Click here to see these personalized tumblers on Amazon.

Tumblers are very popular for families and restaurants. They are usually made of plastic, making them ideal for children and a cheap solution for restaurants, hospitals, and cafeterias. The most popular sizes are 16 and 20 ounces, but you can find them as small as five ounces and exceeding 30 ounces.

Click here to see these tumblers on Amazon.

2. Water Glass

Pouring a glass or refreshing ice mint water

This glass is the one with which you are probably most familiar. Although the name implies that only water is served in these glasses, they are also used to serve a wide range of beverages including iced teas and soft drinks.

Typically, water glasses come in 12-ounce sizes. However, you can also get them in sizes ranging from 10 to 25 ounces. They generally feature tall, straight sides, but you will find a large selection of designs and styles.

Click here to view this set of water glasses on Amazon.

3. Juice Glass

A yummy and healthy glass of orange juice

Juice glasses are smaller than your typical drinking glass at only seven ounces. Some are even as small as three ounces.

This makes them perfect for serving drinks with breakfast, such as orange juice, apple juice, and milk. Many are constructed of glass, but you can find a variety of plastic juice cups for children and toddlers.

Click here to view these juice glasses on Amazon.

Click here to view these juice cups for kids on Amazon.

4. Rocks Glass

A rocks glass with whiskey and ice on the table, 11 Types Of Drinking Glasses You Should Know

Have you ever ordered a drink on the rocks? If not, you have likely heard it ordered by someone else. That's where this glass gets its name.

It is sometimes referred to as an old fashioned glass as well. It is most notably used to serve whiskey; however, some restaurants have taken to serving water in them. Rocks glasses are smaller to better accommodate whiskey drinkers, usually around 10 ounces.

Click here to view this glass on Amazon.

5. Pint Glass

Two pint glass filled with pint bear in a small pub

Pint glasses are extremely versatile. You can use them as everyday drinking glasses, but they are also used in bars and restaurants for serving beer, sodas, and other beverages. Bartenders often use them as mixing glasses for cocktails and such.

Click here to see these glasses on Amazon.

6. Goblet

A soothing and smooth glass of champagne

Have you ever ordered a cocktail at a fancy restaurant? If so, the server may have also included a glass of water to go with your meal.

Nicer restaurants sometimes serve water in goblets, offering a fancier look than your typical water or pint glasses. Fancier bars also serve beer in goblets instead of beer or pint glasses.

7. Beer Glass

A beer glass filled with light beer on the wooden table

Beer glasses are a great deal more complex than other drinkware. There are 24 different types of beer glasses, but we are only going to share a handful of them here to keep it simple.

Are you wondering why anyone would need so many different types of glasses for beer? There is good reason; each glass is made to accentuate the flavors of the various types of beer for which they serve.


Weizenbier glasses are used for serving wheat beer. They are taller than pint glasses, and instead of sporting straight sides, they have an almost hourglass figure with the bottom being smaller than the top. Wheat beer features a lot of foam which this glass supports with its wide mouth.


Stange glasses, typically known for serving Kolsch beer, are tall and narrow with straight sides. The top of the glass stays in line with the bottom, helping the beer maintain its carbonation while also accentuating the fragrances of hop and malt.


Pilsner glasses are tall and quite slim. They start off with a narrow bottom that gets slightly wider as you move to the top which features a slight curve. The style of this glass maintains the foam with all its flavors and aromas while also preserving the beer's carbonation and highlighting its color.

Beer Mug

Unlike other beer glasses, the mug is not designed to accentuate any flavors or aid in keeping the foam alive. Instead, its purpose is to hold as much beer as possible so that you can get your drink on.

However, pouring your beer into any type of glass, including a beer mug, will bring out more flavor than drinking from the bottle or can. It will also help keep your belching under control.

8. Wine Glass

Two glasses of wine white and rose standing on a table in a restaurant setting. How Should You Hold A Red Wine Glass

Like beer glasses, you'll find there is a large assortment of wine glasses. Instead of walking in the store and buying the first glass that catches your eye, you should match your drinkware to the type of wine you plan to enjoy.

Although the following list is not exhaustive, it will give you a better idea of which glass to use with your choice of wine.

Tip: Although stemless wine glasses are attractive, they may not keep your wine cold. The purpose of the stem is to keep your hands from warming the wine while you sip.

Red Wine

Bordeaux and Zinfandel glasses are very similar to one another. The main difference between these two glasses is the height. The Bordeaux is slightly taller with a narrower rim. However, the Zinfandel features a slightly smaller bowl.

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir glasses are shorter than other red wine glasses and boast the widest bowl. However, this does not mean you should fill it all the way up. Instead, you should never fill your red wine glass past the largest section of the bowl.

Doing so will prevent it from getting enough air. Once you get past the bowl, the glass gets narrower, and the top flips out like a flower. This design helps you get the most out of the flavor and fragrance of the wine.

White Wine

If you enjoy the bubbly taste of champagne, you need to drink it from the right type of glass. Champagne flutes are much narrower than other glasses and are shorter as well.

This style is designed to keep the bubbles alive. If you drink from a wide-bowl wine glass, the carbonation will fizzle out much too soon.

Chardonnay glasses are very similar to those used for enjoying Zinfandel. The bowl of this glass is fairly wide, but the top isn't much smaller. This design accentuates the sweetness of the wine, sending the full flavor directly to the tip of your tongue and sides instead of the back.

9. Martini Glass

A soothing glass of Martini

When you think of martinis, you probably conjure up images of fancy, long-stemmed glasses featuring olives on a toothpick.

You wouldn't be wrong, but not all martinis contain olives, and not all martini glasses have long stems. The glass itself is shaped like a cone, being wider on the top and getting slimmer toward the base.

They used to be fairly small, but as people started craving larger portions, the glasses grew to accommodate this need.

Originally, martini glasses were approximately four ounces. However, they now commonly range from about six to eight ounces. If that sounds too small for your liking, you can now order a 12-ounce martini.

Fun Fact: Cosmopolitans are also served in martini glasses.

Long-Stemmed Martini Glass

Click here to see this glass on Amazon.

Stemless Martini Glass

Click here to see this glass on Amazon.

10. Margarita Glass

A soothing and delicious glass of margarita

Margarita glasses typically have a wide rim with a smaller base and long stem. However, some feature a flat bottom with a wide rim and a long stem.

Standard size glasses are approximately 12 ounces, but you can get them as large as 36 ounces. Some restaurants even serve margaritas in fish bowls!

Style One

Check out this margarita glass on Amazon.

Style Two

Check out this margarita glass on Amazon.

11. Irish Coffee Glass

An Irish coffee glass with chocolate chip and whip cream

If you enjoy your coffee with a dash of liquor, you are probably familiar with Irish coffee glasses. They look very similar to goblets, but they feature handles and wider rims.

The handle makes it seem a bit more like a coffee cup; although, it is much more elegant. Unlike other drinking glasses, the Irish coffee glass is heat resistant to prevent you from burning yourself, and the wide opening at the top makes it easier for bartenders to add whipped cream or foam.

In Closing

With so many glasses from which to choose, it's easy to become overwhelmed. By understanding the different uses for each glass, you will be able to better enjoy your drinks and impress your guests by presenting them with the proper drinkware.

For more tips regarding glasses, check out these other helpful posts:

Should Wine Glasses Be Thick Or Thin?

How Many Drinking Glasses Should You Own?

How To Store Glasses And Cups In The Kitchen

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