One of the most iconic drinking vessels for beer is not glassware at all, but kilned stoneware. The stein enjoyed its heyday in the 1800s when drinking culture in Germany centered around long communal tables in elaborate beer gardens or “kellers.” The stein, with it’s hinged lid, kept both insects and falling leaves out of the glass while still allowing for easy one-handed drinking. Beyond their simple utility though the steins served as an artistic medium for elaborate designs and illustrations. Stoneware began to fall out of favor once beer filters were invented in 1878. Once brewers began to make perfectly clear beer there was a need for a drinking vessels that they could see through as well.
What it’s best for: Re-enacting German beer history, just be careful if you’ve got the genuine article. Authentic, handmade German Steins from the 1800’s are extremely valuable collectors items.Back to top