Care & Share Your Glassware
The last 10 years has seen a step change in both glass technology and the means of keeping glasses clean.
Toughened glass has dramatically improved safety, being around three times stronger than ordinary glass, with the added benefit that if broken it shatters into smaller, less jagged pieces.
And the advent of nucleated glasses – with etching on the inside base of lager glasses providing a stippled surface around which the CO2 in the beer breaks out – both assists in the creation of a good head and produces a constant stream of bubbles that makes the drink visually appealing.
Here are Take Stock’s top tips to help you make the most of your glassware…
Is the glass bright and clear? Customers judge pubs by the appearance of their glassware. A worn, dirty, smeared or damaged glass says you don’t care, and reflects badly on every aspect of your establishment, food included.
Glasses need to be washed and disinfected after every use – and best practice is to carry out a weekly glass renovation.
Unless the inside of the glass is properly rinsed and free of grease, the beer‘s gas releasing properties will be impaired, leading to a drink that will look flat and unappealing.
Don’t stack glasses inside each other – it puts strain on the rim and causes cracking and chipping. For the same reason, avoid picking up glasses in clusters and never put cutlery in glasses.
Cool & dry
Only use a glass that is dry, cool and odour free. Pouring beer into a wet glass adversely affects the head formation and how the nucleation works – and the end result is a flat, lifeless looking beer. And pouring into a warm or worse hot glass straight out of the washer ruins the beer’s flavour.
Never use a tea towel to dry glasses – it’s unhygienic. Store just washed glasses upside down on a ventilated surface, or better still invest in a glass drying machine. Airack systems can dry up to 30 pint glasses in just four minutes – simply put washed glasses in, press a button and it’s all done for you.
Glass washer etiquette
- Check and clean your washer daily
- Use only the recommended cleaning solutions
- Empty slops before racking glasses for washing. Never pour into the machine
- Remove lipstick marks from glasses before putting into the washer
- Don’t overload the machine
- Never wash dishes or utensils with glassware
- Once the wash cycle has finished, remove glasses immediately
- Leave glasses to cool and dry before using again
Beer Glass Types
The archetypal pub glass that works with almost any beer, as the slight bowl shape not only helps the drinker enjoy the beer’s flavour and aroma but also promotes a full, healthy looking head. The glass of choice for stouts and porters, but not for high alcohol brews where you want to sip slowly rather than swig.
Be it the classic handled pint pot or Germanic Stein, handled pots allow easy holding and minimal transmission of hand warmth. Typically made of thicker glass to avoid breakage when being ‘clinked’, these glasses come in a variety of styles, the most common being the slightly curved pint pot and the straight-sided stein – de rigueur for serving German style beers.
The tall and slender shape shows off the colour, clarity and carbonation of lagers and pilsners – especially when aided by a nucleation device that is almost always standard in this type of glass. Use for all lagers and low alcohol beers.
As with the Imperial, this is a pub favourite that’s suitable for all quaffing ales. The slightly bulging glass side allows for easier handling – especially when wet – and stops glasses sticking together if stacked (although that’s not recommended).
Commonplace in bars across the USA, but not good for serving beer in, as the shape and open brim don’t catch flavours and aromas. It doesn’t aid head retention either! Best used for shaking cocktails at a bar – which is where the name came from.
The glass of choice for beers that are sipped and savoured, as opposed to swigged. The shape focuses the aroma on the nose and the short stem allows hand warmth to release the smell of the ale within. Use for all strong ales, high alcohol beers and barley wines.
Great for any kind of ale, the shape captures flavours and aromas and is excellent for head creation. The rim of the glass helps deliver the beer to the tongue centre, aiding taste and by holding the stem; hand warmth doesn’t warm up the glass contents.
Use for all Belgian beers, saisons, lambics, red ales and fruit beers – or indeed any ale where you want the drinker to enjoy taste and aroma to the maximum.
Clean glasses depend upon using the correct cleaning agents