Worth It: A Glass That Makes Beer Taste Even Better

Illustration for article titled Worth It: A Glass That Makes Beer Taste Even Better

Much unlike many a magazine editor who recommends you buy all sorts of crap that they most likely got for free, your Jezebel staff doesn't get jack shit (other than books, unsolicited). And that's how it should be. But on our own time, in our personal lives, we still buy stuff. So this is Worth It, our daily recommendation of random things that we've actually spent our own money on. These are the things we buy regularly or really like, things we'd actually tell our friends about. And now we're telling you.


In recent years the craft beer movement has been exploding in the U.S., and within my own boozy repertoire. When I first started drinking (on my 21st birthday, and not a day sooner, of course) I found beer tolerable, but but icky. Then at some point toward the end of college I became a beer snob, thanks to several circumstances. First, a miscommunication led to one of my friends buying a tremendous amount of Guinness for a sorority party. For many of the girls in the group Smirnoff Ice and Mike's were about as "hard" as their drinking got, so anyone who could tolerate something darker was encouraged to drink up the remainder. I discovered beer was a much more complex beverage than the swill that comes out of a red cup after the filthy ping pong ball has been removed.

Second, as a college student in the Boston area I eventually wound up on tours of the Harpoon and Sam Adams breweries (i.e. more free beer). Thats where I first encountered the Sam Adams Boston Lager Glass, which seems totally ridiculous but actually works. A beverage you've ordered has probably arrived in one of these glasses, but the difference in taste is surprising when you do a nerdy side-by-side comparison with the bottle or even a regular-shaped pint glass.

The Boston Beer Company (maker of Sam Adams) developed the glass in 2007 after "years of scientific research" and according to their intense schematic, the glass has five features:

Outward turned lip places beer at front of palate to maximize enjoyment of sweetness from the malt.

Narrow top retains the hop aroma and sustains the head.

Rounded shape collects aromas.

Thinner walls and rounded shape maintain proper beer temperature longer.

Laster etching on bottom creates bubbles for constant aroma release.

I don't quite understand how the shape of the glass is keeping the beer cold and I haven't noticed much of a difference in the beer's head. To me it seems the key feature is the outward turned lip and aroma boost. When you sip a beer from the bottle it hits a limited area of your tongue, but the shape of the Boston Lager Glass gives you a more complex taste.

For years I didn't buy my own set because $30 plus shipping for four glasses is a bit pricy. However, they periodically have promotions that let you get free glasses by sending in a few Sam Adams six pack UPC codes. I recently got two glasses for just the cost of shipping, which was $11 for two glasses. Why spend more on a craft beer if you aren't going to get the full range of flavors (and enjoy being that jerk who analyzes a glass of beer like it's a pricy bottle of wine)?

Samuel Adams Boston Lager Glass, $30 for four at SamuelAdams.com, or $11 for two during promotions.


Worth It only features things we paid for ourselves and actually like. Don't send us stuff.



Hypothetically, (since I'm not yet 21), if I had tried beer, I might have found it nasty and bitter and really not liked it. Purely hypothetically of course. It just seems in my general experience that beers-even fancier ones-are very bitter due to the hops, and I don't like bitter foods. (I don't drink coffee or like dark chocolate either, because of the bitterness.) Then again, does Shock Top count as a "fancy" beer, or is it just a "fancy" beer when compared to stuff like Miller Lite in the sense that a Little Debbie is a "fancy" desert compared to a Ding-Dong?I know next to nothing about beer, so if someone does know a beer that even someone who dislikes bitter foods could like, I'm open for recommendations. Only for after I go to NZ and it's legal for me to drink, of course. :P