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8 Best Whisky Glasses

The best whisky glasses will make your whisky taste even better.

Drinking whisky (like the magnificent bastard you are) is an art that needs to be enjoyed. Not only is there a whole world of whisky to learn about, with several countries around the world producing bottles with their own unique tastes and textures, but just being able to relax in a chair (an Eames, ideally), savour the taste, and enjoy a cigar or two is every gentleman’s idea of paradise.

But the whole look can be ruined if you drink your whisky from the wrong glass. Yes, when it comes to drinking the oesophagus-burning good stuff, there are distinct rights and wrongs with regards to glassware. You can’t simply reach for any old tumbler in your cupboard. Instead, you need a proper whisky glass. Don’t argue with us.

When shopping for whisky glasses, you’ll likely come across the terms old fashioned and double old fashioned. The naming comes from the classic whisky-based cocktail, but with regards to the ‘double’ prefix, this type of glass is usually two ounces (60ml) larger than its single rocks glass sibling.

The larger size lends it to be better suited to cocktails with ice, whereas the single rocks glass is what you want when you’re sipping on a neat pour. It’s not wrong per se to drink a neat pour from a double glass, it will just look slightly out of proportion.

However, there are also other whisky glass variations, with official titles, that have their own respective properties. Old fashioned tumblers have a wider opening at the top, which whisky boffins claim doesn’t focus on the aromas of the spirit so well.

In order for your sense of smell to be truly satisfied, you should be looking for glasses such as the Glencairn, developed by Glencairn Crystal in Scotland, UK. The Glencairn glass fuses together the best of everything in whisky glassware, with a heavy bottom akin to the old fashioned rocks glass, with a curved upper to focus the aromas, similar to a nosing copitas glass.

Mini Glencairn glasses are commonly used at distilleries for serving samples.

And when you’re spending good money on a bottle, you shouldn’t settle for some cheap glassware either, but something that is just as much a piece of art that can be displayed through a glass-fronted cabinet, as it is a functional glass.

Whisky Glasses FAQs

What is a whisky snifter?

A snifter is commonly used for consumption of dark, aged spirits like brandy, whisky and bourbon. It is a short-stemmed glass with a wide bottom and narrow top.

Do whisky glasses make a difference?

Definitely. Whisky glasses are shaped to enhance your drinking experience. They should influence the smell and taste you perceive, concentrate vapours and allow you to “nose” the whisky.

How much whisky do you pour in a glass?

A standard whisky is 1.5 ounces for a shot. For a near or rocks pour, it should be two ounces. For double, its three ounces.

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