There’s nothing like kicking back to relax with an old-fashioned, but it’s even better if you have the right glass. The best old-fashioned glasses have a capacity of at least 9 ounces, a classic design, and a weighted base.
To learn more about what makes a great glass for an old-fashioned, I caught up with Ira Koplowitz, a former bartender and co-owner of Bittercube Bitters. As a true lover of this classic cocktail, he had a lot of insights into how it should be served. For starters, he’s not a fan of oversized glasses for an old-fashioned and recommends choosing a glass that can hold between 9 and 11 ounces of liquid (though, if you want to make it a double, there’s an oversized pick on this list, too).
“That size glass can service a cocktail like a Sazerac that has no ice, but also can be utilized for a class old-fashioned,” Koplowitz advises. “Glass size is also dependent on the style of ice being used. With large, tray ice cubes or a small sphere, a smaller glass works perfectly. With a larger ice sphere, a larger glass may be preferred.”
Old-fashioned glasses or whiskey tumblers are typically sold in sets of two, four, or six, and the number many you need will depend on how many guests you usually entertain. In terms of materials, look for either glass or lead-free crystal (also known as crystalline), and try to find an option with a weighted base.
“I prefer a glass with a nice weight to the base,” Koplowitz notes, “It enhances the feel of the glass in the hand, both when drinking a cocktail and a neat pour. Even the final sips feel substantial in a weighted glass.”
As far as choosing between an etched glass or one with a simple straight-sided design, you should go with the style that best suits your personality. Or as Koplowitz puts it:
“The old-fashioned is the original cocktail. It is a simple libation, with only four ingredients - spirit, sugar, water, and bitters. That type of simplicity and elegance should inform your search for the perfect old-fashioned glass.”
If you’re ready to perfect your cocktail making, here are some of the best old-fashioned glasses you can buy on Amazon.
1. The Best Etched Glasses
- Capacity: 9.92 ounces
- Material: Non-leaded crystal
This boxed set of etched whiskey tumblers comes with four glasses made from lead-free crystal. Each holds right around 10 ounces of liquid, which is perfect for an old-fashioned. The glasses are dishwasher-safe and resistant to breaking, so you won’t have to worry about hand-washing. Amazon reviewers noted that these have a sturdy, weighted base that feels great to hold, and the set boasts an overall 4.8-star rating and over 2,800 reviews.
One fan raved: “I really like the look of these glasses -especially when they've got an OldFashioned or even a Margarita in them. The size is perfect for a drink "on the rocks"-- with a big ice cube in them, the standard "rocks" drink fills this glass nearly to the top.”
2. The Best Straight-Sided Glasses
- Capacity: 11 ounces
- Material: Glass
If you want a set of classic old-fashioned glasses, look no further. These 11-ounce glasses come in a set of six, so they’re great for hosting cocktail hour at home. Each glass has a heavy base and a simple, straight-sided design that will let your mixology skills really stand out. They’re also dishwasher-safe and have a perfect five-star rating from thousands of Amazon shoppers, with many praising the quality.
One fan raved: “These glasses are perfect for classic cocktails like Negroni and OldFashioned, and were bought to complement our home bar. We like the classic and simple design, with the weighted bottom.”
3. The Best Modern Glasses
- Capacity: 10 ounces
- Material: Crystalline
For a fresh take on the straight-sided whiskey glass, this set of four 10-ounce crystalline glasses has a three-dimensional inset design that’s reminiscent of a mountain range. Each glass weighs over a pound, making them an absolute pleasure to drink from. They’re also dishwasher-safe and resistant to breaking. According to the brand, the unique design of these glasses also helps to aerate your beverages.
One fan raved: “These are the perfect old fashion glasses! Classy but sturdy very different! Would make an excellent gift!”
4. The Best For A Double Old-Fashioned
- Capacity: 14 ounces
- Material: Glass
These double old-fashioned glasses are perfect for those times when you want a slightly stronger drink, or simply want to use some cool oversized ice cubes. This set of two 14-ounce glasses has a print based on the stained glass windows found at the Darwin D. Martin House in Buffalo, New York. They’re made from lead-free glass, and each one weighs just under a pound. Unlike the other options on this list, these glasses must be washed by hand. The glasses are officially licensed by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, and they make a great gift for the art-lover in your life.
One fan raved: “These glasses were a gift for my brothers in-law. They have a notable Craftsman home and the glasses are perfect with their decor. They said they loved them and match perfectly with leaded glass they already have. Going on display in the new cabinet.”
Ira Koplowitz, co-owner of Bittercube Bitters