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Two rocks glasses of whiskey with ice

What Are Rocks Glasses Used For?

Beverages come in all colors, flavors, and sizes. Wine, beer, and spirits might be the most popular alcoholic drinks, but there are many others. Interestingly, the world of drinks is so varied and intertwined with the culture that we’ve developed glassware for virtually all drinks.

Drinks show their best when served in the proper glassware. The purpose of some types of glassware, like stemmed wine glasses, is evident, but others are a bit more complicated. Let’s talk rocks glasses. The most famous of short glasses is incredibly versatile, and having a couple around the house comes in handy more often than you think.

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What Is A Rocks Glass?

Also known as old-fashioned glass, lowball glass, or tumbler, the rocks glass is a short type of glassware made of glass or crystal. It usually holds between 6 and 12 fluid ounces (180-350ml) and is ideal for serving spirits and cocktails neat or ‘on the rocks,’ meaning with a couple of ice cubes.

Rocks glasses vary in size and shape, but they’re all short and tend to have a sturdy base. Typical designs are made with decorative pressed glass, but the most modern examples resemble stemless wine glasses. What all rocks glasses have in common is that they’re comfortable and easy to store and maintain.

Four people holding rocks glasses of whiskey on the rocks

What Drinks Are Served In Rocks Glasses?

Rocks glasses are ideal for enjoying spirits and are prevalent amongst whisk(e)y enthusiasts. Of course, this type of glassware has been used to serve cocktails since cocktails became mainstream.

Here is a list of cocktails commonly served in a rocks glass:

  • Old-Fashioned Cocktail
  • Whiskey sour
  • Amaretto sour
  • Negroni
  • The Grandfather
  • Salty Dog
  • Bramble
  • Mojito
  • Mai Tai
  • Caipirinha

Muddled cocktails, such as the mojito, caipirinha, and any other fruity concoctions, are always served in rocks glasses. This is because muddling in these wide glasses is easy; the thick bottom prevents the glass from shattering.

three mojitos in rocks glasses

Features of Rocks Glasses

Although not all rocks glasses are the same, some are better than others for several reasons. Look for these features when shopping for rocks glasses for your glassware collection.

  • Rocks glasses should be translucent, ideally made with high-quality glass or crystal.
  • Rocks glasses must have a heavy bottom that makes them more comfortable to handle and ideal for muddling ingredients. 
  • Rocks glasses should be spacey and wide, even if you enjoy a couple of ounces of your favorite drink at a time, you should be able to swirl them confidently. 

Buy Rocks Glasses Online

The best part about rocks glasses is that they’re not nearly as delicate as other types of stemware, so you can confidently order them online. And since they don’t take much space or need specialized racking, you can store them in any cupboard.

Rocks glasses have been popular for centuries and are still trendy. Having a set at home is an easy decision for cocktail and spirit enthusiasts; however, these versatile glasses are also perfect for non-alcoholic drinks—they can do it all.

Ensure you get the proper glassware for you and source it from reputable sources to avoid unpleasant surprises. 

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