There are different temperatures at which particular beers should be served for maximum enjoyment. Serve a beer too cold and most of its flavor may be lost. The sensation of coldness inhibits the tongue’s ability to sense taste. And while serving beer at warmer temperatures may be ideal for bringing out its aroma and flavor for evaluating it, many drinkers prefer to enjoy beer at cooler temperatures. Ideally, just about all beers should be served somewhere between ice-cold and room temperature. As a general rule, lighter beers are served colder with big, darker beers served at the warmer end of the scale. Specific serving temperature recommendations are provided in the BARZZ.Net Beer Search for hundreds of specific beers. However, the following is a general guideline of various types of beers and their ideal serving temperature ranges:
Fruit beer, Pilsner, Golden Ale
40 – 45 F
Wheat Beer, Lager, Pale/Amber Ale, Belgian Ale
40 – 55 F
Dark Ale, Stout, Porter, Barley Wine, Cider, Bock
55 - 60 F
In addition to serving beer at the right temperature, certain beers call for specific types of glasses. Although, there are hundreds of different types of glasses that would accommodate hundreds of different beers, the following list is a general guideline that will meet most situations:
Pokal or Pilsner Glass – (Pilsners and Lagers)
A Pilsner glass is a tall, slender glass with an inverted cone shape at the rim allowing for a robust head and zesty carbonation. They generally come in a 12-ounce size.
Basic Pint Glass – (Ales, Porters, and Stouts) –
The basic pint glass is commonly used when served from many brewpubs and bars. The distinctive bulge near the rim of the glass helps release the aroma hops of pale ales while also capturing the darker, roasted malt flavors of Stouts. There are two standard sizes – 16-ounce and 20-ounce.
Tulip glasses are shorter than the standard pint or pilsner glass. They generally have a fat bottom, curving inward toward the middle, and then out toward the rim, giving it the shape of a tulip for which it takes its name from.
Goblet - (Heavy, malty beers) –
Goblet style glasses have a round, bowl-like look and used for beers where hop aroma does not play a significant role in its overall flavor.
Weizen Glass – (Wheat beers) –
The Weizen glass accommodates the high carbonation and big head of traditional Bavarian Wheat beers. Most are 0.5 Liters in size and take on a classy style with its thin walls and length.
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