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About The Glencairn Whisky Glass

Glencairn whisky glassIn 2001 Glencairn Crystal introduced 'The Glencairn Glass'. This innovative and most excellent whisky glass was designed by Raymond Davidson nearly 25 years earlier and involved infamous master blenders perfecting his initial design. Their expertise has made this glass a fantastic and welcome addition to the whisky world.

The Glencairn Glass's roots lie predominantly in the traditional nosing and tasting glasses used internationally by master blenders and connoisseurs. The glass' shape is perfect for whisky; it's designed to enhance the overall experience from start to finish, including the very important nosing and tasting.

The Glencairn Glass is now frequently known as the definitive and official glass for whisky; up until now, the whisky world has not had a glass to call its own. It is used around the World by master blenders and connoisseurs. This unique glassware design has been crafted, thanks to Scottish innovation, to enhance the overall enjoyment of all single malts and aged blends. The narrow mouth allows for ease of drinking, whilst the wide bowl allows for the fullest appreciation of the whisky's colour. The sturdy solid base creates a comfortable grip, designed to be easy on the hand.

In 2006, the glass received the Queen's Award for Innovation and received numerous prestigious marketing awards. To this day, it continues to be the best and most special glass for serving and tasting whisky. This glass is suitable for dishwasher use and is also available for glass hire, ideal for whisky tasting evenings or events.

Click here to purchase the Glencairn Official Whisky Glass.


Wineware's five basic steps to appreciating whisky


Note-taking is essential as it helps you remember which whisky you enjoyed and which you'd rather steer clear of! It can be a useful reminder when hosting your own whisky tasting evening or advising a friend of which bottle to try.


  1. Colour – is your whisky a light gold, bright copper or rich amber colour? The different colours of whisky can indicate the type of oak cask used and the length of maturation (10 years, 15 years, 30 years etc.) We suggest using Whisky Magazine's whisky colour chart to help identify your whisky colour. Remember to hold your glass up to the light as this can identify the depth of colour.
  2. Body – does your whisky have a light, medium or full body? The mouth-feel of whisky is also commonly described as either thin and light or thick and full.
  3. Nose – 'nose' your whisky and jot down the different aromas. This could be burnt sugar, fruits, nuts, smoky or chocolaty. We always recommend swirling the whisky in the glass slowly and carefully while taking short smells of the contents. Some people may also opt for covering the whisky glass with the palm of a hand and giving it a firm shake. This ensures the whisky coats the side of the glass, and the aromas are appreciated. If you notice the whisky dribbling down the glass, this is known as the 'legs' and indicates a whisky's viscosity. Compare your 'nose notes' with a friend or fellow whisky taster. Your nose really will tell you a lot about the whisky's flavour!
  4. Palate – what characteristics do you notice on the palate? Allow the whisky to roll back over your tongue to reach all of the different taste buds. You may describe the whisky as meaty, peppery or hot. On the other hand, it may be extremely sweet and fruity. Jot down all of the flavours, tastes and sensations which spring to mind! These will often differ from someone else's notes as we all taste differently.
  5. Finish – this is the time the flavour remains on the palate. This can be a short period or a long and lingering taste that you enjoy. Ask yourself, do the flavours linger for a long time or disappear quickly? We think that the best whiskies will have a long and rather enjoyable finish.


Common questions relating to the Glencairn Glass

How do you drink from the Glencairn Glass?

The design and shape of the glass dictate how you drink from the glass and, ultimately, how you taste the whisky. It has been designed so  your head tilts to a certain angle, directly placing the whisky onto your tongue.

Can I put ice in Glencairn glass?

No, the Glencairn glass is too small to allow ice cubes to be placed within the glass; however, you can add water if you wish.

Does a Glencairn Glass make a difference?

Yes! It is used by master blenders, distilleries and whisky enthusiasts around the World. You can try it against a traditional whisky tumbler, pouring a measure into each and then tasting the same whisky side by side in different glasses.

Can you put Glencairn glasses in the dishwasher?

Yes, you can use the Glencairn whisky glass in a dishwasher; it's a strong and sturdy glass.

How to drink whisky


Glencairn Crystal's history

Glencairn Crystal has been producing high-quality crystal glassware for over 30 years. Their expert craftsmanship and undeniable quality have made them one of the UK's leading suppliers of decorated crystal. They pride themselves as a family-run company offering quality products with outstanding customer service.

Glencairn Crystal supplies a wide range of products from crystal glassware, trophies and wine goblets to presentation gifts. Their attention to detail and service has built long-lasting relationships with clients and suppliers worldwide. They have extensive knowledge and expertise in glass decoration and design and have worked in partnership with groundbreaking companies. In 2012 the company received the Queen's Award for International Trade.

Glencairn Testimonials

Campbell Evans, Scotch Whisky Association - "A new Scotch Whisky glass with a design which reflects the quality of Scotch and raises its profile."
Richard Paterson, Master Blender at Whyte & Mackay - "Like a good Whisky, this glass has plenty of character."
Michael Jackson, Whisky Magazine - "I hope restaurants and pubs adopt it, and it becomes a badge of connoisseurship for fine Whiskies in general."

Contact us

Please contact us via our online form if you need any further advice or purchase Glencairn Whisky glasses. If you are interested in finding a whisky event near you, please see our UK Whisky Events Calendar. 

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