Tulips, shakers and snifters, oh my! Choosing the correct glass in which to serve beer can be daunting. In Belgium, using the proper beer glassware is almost a religion. No self-respecting bartender in that beer-loving country would ever serve Flanders red ale in a shaker glass. It’s all about presenting beer at its best, accenting characteristics and creating a memorable experience.

As craft beer drinkers grow more sophisticated, though, they demand proper glassware. With hundreds of beer styles, each with recommended serving glassware, stocking the correct vessel is an expensive proposition for bar owners and home beer aficionados. Focusing on a few glassware styles and using them properly can reduce the cost and still ensure a better beer-drinking experience.

In America, the pint – or shaker – glass is the usual beer-serving glass. Walk into any bar, tavern or tap room and you’ll see them stacked behind the bar, emblazoned with many breweries’ logos. While it’s not the best-suited glass for all beers, it is inexpensive and holds about 16 ounces. A variation on this is the “nonic” style used in the United Kingdom. It features a bump out around the upper portion of the glass, so it’s easier to hold. This style is best for pale ales, IPAs, porters and stouts.

In Germany, pilsners are popular. The tall, thin
pilsner glass was made to showcase the golden color and bubbles running inside, and concentrate the foamy, aromatic head. Other beer styles in pilsner: blonde ale, hefeweizen, pilsner, California common/steam beer, Japanese rice lager, witbier.

Snifters have a large bowl with a narrower mouth, so drinkers can experience highly aromatic beers as brewers intended. The bowl has room for swirling to bring out the scents as the mouth concentrates them. Tulip glasses are similar, but a bit taller, thinner and with a turned-out lip. Beers to try in a snifter are old/strong ale, barleywine, double/imperial IPA, double/imperial stout, Belgian dark ale, Belgian pale ale, quad, tripel, goze, geuze, Berliner weiss and Scottish ales.

Sturdy yet elegant, goblets have large, wide-mouthed bowls on strong stems. They’re often ornate and may have gold or silver leaf designs. It offers a large surface area for lots of aromatic head. Beers good in goblets are Belgian IPA, Belgian strong dark ale, dubbel, tripel and quad.

With these, you can serve most beers well.

Big Easy IPA Tour 

Abita Brewing Company introduces a new Big Easy Session IPA. Free samples, giveaways, Mardi Gras beads, live music. April 13, 6 p.m., Copeland’s, 4310 Southside Blvd.

Chew & Brew Festival 
The inaugural food truck & craft beer championship has a wide beer selection, activities and crafts, a free concert with four bands, games. April 16, 4-10 p.m., SeaWalk Pavilion, First Street North, Jax Beach.

Alewife Beer School: Beer Ingredient Series 
Partnered with local breweries Intuition Ale Works, Engine 15, and Aardwolf, Alewife Bottle Shop & Tasting Room holds beer education classes. Malt, Engine 15, April 18, 6:30 p.m., 1500 Beach Blvd., Ste. 217, Jax Beach. Hops, Intuition, April 26, 6:30 p.m., 720 King St. Yeast, Aardwolf, May 2, 6:30 p.m., 1461 Hendricks Ave.