Glassware Basics

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Before deciding on quantities, first decide which type of glassware you will need for your dining room or your bar. Below is a list of all types of glassware available at, and how they can be used in your dining room or bar.

Beverage Glassware

beverage glassware
Beverage Glasses
These all-purpose glasses can be used to hold any beverage you wish. They come in various sizes, shapes and capacities to fit your dining room needs.
water glasses
Water Glasses
Water glasses hold anywhere from 5 to 14 ounces of water. In a pinch, plastic drinkware can be used in lieu of glass, especially when it comes to serving water.
ice tea glasses
Ice Tea Glasses
Some iced tea glasses resemble regular beverage glasses, while some have stems and resemble wine glass or a goblet. These glasses can be used for iced tea, as well as water or any other beverage.
juice glasses
Juice Glasses
Small juice glasses are great for serving juice at breakfast and brunch. They are smaller than most beverage glasses.

Beer Service

beer mugs and steins
Beer Mugs and Steins
These heavy thick mugs are designed to hold beer without breakage. They have sturdy handles for easier lifting. Beer steins are a special kind of beer mug that originated in German. A beer stein is much like a beer mug, but includes a thumb rest or a lid.
beer glasses
Beer Glasses
Some glasses are specifically designed to hold pints of beer or pilsner and lager beers. Pilsner glasses are flared with the top being wider than the bottom. Pint glasses are perfect for holding water, soda or beers and ciders from the tap.

Liquor, Cocktail and Mixed Drink Service

hurricane glass
Hurricane Glasses
These glasses are shaped like the old-fashioned hurricane lamps, and are designed to hold fruity cocktails and other drink concoctions.
margarita glass
Margarita Glasses
Margarita glasses are usually large with a bowl shape, and sometimes have a smaller bowl below the large bowl for a decorative touch. The glass is wide so that the rim can be coated in salt or sugar to accent the drink.
martini glass
Martini and Cocktail Glasses
For serving martinis or any other cocktail, use a martini glass or cocktail glass. The triangular bowl shape holds martinis, cosmopolitans, manhattans, and other fun cocktails. They are also great for serving champagne.
rocks glasses
Rock Glasses
When a customer asks for a mixed drink served on the rocks, reach for a rocks glass. These small tumblers can also be used to serve mixed drinks and liqueur drinks.
Highball Glasses
These tall glasses are perfect for holding larger cocktails and mixed drinks, like whiskey and soda, Long Island iced tea, a mojito or a Bloody Mary. They can also be used as an all-purpose beverage glass.
Old Fashioned Glasses
These glasses are also known as lowball glasses, and can work as rocks glasses. They are great for holding small mixed drinks like their namesake, the Old Fashioned, or any type of liquor served on the rocks.
Collins Glasses
These glasses are designed to hold a Tom Collins mixed drink, but can be used to hold any number of mixed drinks. They resemble highball glasses, but highball glasses are usually shorter and wider.
Shot, Shooter and Whiskey Glasses
For measuring or serving shots, use a shot, shooter or whiskey glass. These glasses can be used to hold single liquors or liquor concoctions. Shooter glasses are usually taller than shot glasses, while whiskey glasses are wide enough to fit ice. The bottoms of the glasses are extra thick, so that they absorb the shock of being slammed on a surface.
Brandy Snifters
These glasses have a shorter stem than wine glasses and are designed to hold brandy, a spirit that is made from distilled wine and often served after dinner. The glasses are capable of holding much more liquid than should be poured. Fill the glass about a third of the way up so that the brandy can breathe in the glass.
Coffee Glasses
These glass mugs can be used to hold any type of warm or iced beverage, such as coffee, tea or cider. In a bar setting, they are often used to serve Irish coffee, because the glass mug keeps the beverage warm while adding a decorative touch to the drink.
Cordial Glasses
A cordial glass can be used to serve any kind of sweet liqueurs. They can also function as an elegant glass for serving beer samples.
Cosmopolitan Glasses
Ideal for holding cosmos or other mixed drinks, cosmopolitan glasses resemble a stemless cocktail glass.

Wine, Champagne and Sherry Glasses

Red Wine Glasses
Red wine glasses are designed to have a larger rim so that the person drinking the wine can smell the aroma while sipping the wine. Stemless wine glasses can also be used for red wines, since the wine is served room temperature and will not quickly grow warm in the guests hand.
White Wine Glasses
White wine glasses have a smaller rim than the red. The stemmed glasses keep chilled wines cooler longer, as the person drinking the wine can hold the stem instead of holding the glass.
Sherry Glasses
Sherry glasses resemble red wine glasses, only they are a bit smaller and are made to hold fortified wines, like port, or wines with a strong aroma. Sherry has a distinct aroma that gets trapped in these special glasses.
Glass Goblets
Goblets have a shorter stem than wine glasses, but can still be used to hold wine or sherry. They can also be used to hold water or other beverages.
Champagne Glasses
These glasses are usually fluted with a tall and narrow bowl for holding champagne. The small opening helps keep the carbonation inside of the glass longer, so that it keeps the drink from going flat. These glasses are great for holding mimosas and other cocktails as well as champagne.
Having enough glassware throughout the day is crucial for any foodservice operation. Without beverage glasses, juice glasses and coffee mugs, the proper meal cannot be served. A significant portion of restaurant profits come from beverages. Pick the glasses designed to maximize your beverage service.

For small cafés and diners, you won’t need nearly as many types of glasses as you would in a bar or a formal restaurant. Always cover your bases first, and be sure to have plenty of your most used glassware.

water glasses
Water Glasses
These 8-10 ounce glasses are necessary for serving water. You can choose any type of beverage glass you like. You can choose from simple straight sided glasses, paneled glasses or specialty glasses.
beverage glasses
Beverage Glasses
These glasses are great for holding main beverages. We recommend using a beverage glass that holds more than your water glass. You can choose between stemmed and stemless glasses.
coffee glasses
Coffee Glasses
If your café or diner serves coffee, consider using coffee glasses. These decorative glasses are great for holding and serving coffee, lattes, mochas and cappuccinos.
coffee mugs
Coffee Mugs
If you prefer ceramic or porcelain mugs to coffee glasses, check out our ceramic coffee mugs. They come in various capacities and sizes. Consider picking mugs that will match your dinnerware patterns.
juice glasses
Juice Glasses
When serving juice at breakfast or brunch, use a juice glass instead of a water glass. A lot of times, people do not drink juice as heavily as they would water or iced tea. These juice glasses are smaller and therefore reduce the risk of wasting juice, thus saving you money.
Below is a recommendation of how many glasses to keep on hand in your café or diner.
Choosing the Right Glassware for Your Diner or Cafe