Hosting The Perfect Cocktail Party: Choosing The Right Glassware

If you love hosting cocktail parties at your home, you probably already have a collection of specialty liquors, mixers, and drink recipes. However, you may not have considered all of the unique glassware you can purchase to make your signature drinks stand out. Here are a few options to consider as you complete your glassware collection and prepare to host your next cocktail party.

Old Fashioned Glasses

Old fashioned glasses, which are also referred to as rocks glasses, offer a lot of versatility for your bar area. They can be used to serve the classic drink that shares their name, and they can also be used to serve mint juleps or whiskey on ice. Because they typically have a wider brim, they also lend themselves nicely to fruity drinks requiring a bit of garnish.


If you and your guests are aficionados of aged spirits, having a set of snifters can help you to truly savor every drop of your favorite drinks. These glasses are designed to contain the aroma of liquors, so you can both taste and smell as you drink. Snifters are used to serve brandy, whiskey, and even some types of beer. Even if you don't serve a lot of aged spirits, these glasses can bring a bit of a sophisticated air to your cocktail party. Some snifters also come with rich colors and brilliant designs, making them great for display on your bar shelves.

Wine Tumblers

Wine tumblers offer a unique take on the traditional wine glass. Because they are so similar in style to traditional cocktail glasses, you may want to consider using them at cocktail parties where not everyone will be drinking wine. They are ideal for less formal affairs, and because they have no stems, they are easier to store in your cabinets. The lack of stems also makes wine tumblers a bit less fragile than other types of wine glasses. Remember that the lack of stem means you will need to hold these glasses by the bowl, so set them down when you aren't drinking. This will prevent the warmth from your hand from changing the temperature of chilled wines.

Highball Glasses

Highball glasses are a must-have for aspiring mixologists. They are used to serve everything from mojitos to Long Island iced teas. They are tall, narrow glasses that lend themselves well to mixed drinks, and they can also be used to serve nonalcoholic drinks as well. Because these glasses are used for such a wide range of beverages, you may want to consider investing in several different sets featuring different designs or colors.

There are lots of unique types of glassware you can use in your bar area. Once you master the drinks served in these, you can begin to collect other types of cool glassware, such as Irish coffee glasses, copper mugs, and sherry glasses, so you can expand your drink menu and impress your guests.