The Different Types of Gin Glasses and How to Choose Between Them

With gin having undergone a serious resurgence in recent years, there are now hundreds of boutique varieties to choose from - each with its own distinctive blend of botanicals and flavours.

Less talked about, however, is the choice of glasses also available to gin lovers. A simple tumbler might still be the default for a classic G&T, but there are other options.

What are the different types of gin glasses?

Here are the 4 different types of gin glasses, along with their advantages, so you can make the right choice for your next cocktail. 


A tumbler, also known as a rocks glass or old fashioned glass, has long been a standard for gin-based drinks. Its broad body has plenty of room for ice cubes, making it well suited to stronger gin cocktails that require slow sipping at a cool temperature - such as Negroni. The thick base is also useful for muddling the ingredients, which give extra flavour.

Discover the sturdy elegance of Waterford’s crystal tumblers.

Gin balloons

Gin balloons, sometimes known as Copa glasses, are one of the most authentic ways to serve a crisp gin and tonic. The large, bulbous bowl allows all the aromas of your favourite gin to breathe and leaves ample room for ice and garnishes such as lime, lemon, cucumber, or even sprigs of fresh herbs. It’s also perfect for warm weather gatherings because the stem prevents your hand from warming up the drink itself. 

Channel continental style with Waterford’s crystal gin balloons.

Highball glasses

A highball glass is another classic vessel for a gin and tonic. Its tall, narrow shape preserves the crisp fizz of the tonic, and you can pile it high with ice to keep the drink cool on a long summer afternoon. 

Brighten your next alfresco setting with Waterford’s crystal highballs

Cocktail glasses

If you’re partial to a gin martini, it’s best served right in a classic cocktail glass. The sloping sides encourage the gin and vermouth to mix thoroughly and conveniently prop up a skewered olive or two. Just make sure you give the martini a vigorous shake with ice before serving so it’s as chilled as possible. 

Explore timeless crystal cocktail glasses from Waterford.

How to hold a gin glass

The main priority when handling any gin-based drink is to keep the temperature cool. If you’re using a stemmed glass, pinch the stem between thumb and forefingers and avoid touching the bowl. For tumblers and highballs, hold the middle to upper part of the glass between your thumb and fingers while maintaining minimal contact with the base where the ice is held.

Savour your next gin drink in style

Shop Waterford’s range of
crystal gin glasses: a stunning collection of artisanal gin balloons and hiball sets.