bodum For the holidays, Grant bought our mom a set of Luigi Bormioli Duo double-wall drinking glasses. These glasses have a two thin layers of glass separated by an air pocket. This construction apparently provides superior insulation and fends off condensation. Bodum has a similar range of glasses. Reviews of these glasses from all over praise them for keeping their cold drinks cold, and their hot drinks hot for much longer than standard glasses. But how much better are these double-wall glasses? I decided to put them to the test.

Impressions:

The first thing you’ll notice, these glasses are extremely light compared to your standard pint glass; roughly half the weight. They use a much thinner glass and as such, are much more fragile. I would not recommend putting these glasses in the dishwasher. Another neat thing you’ll notice is that the inside layer of glass does not touch the outside layer except at the top. This characteristic makes your drink look like it’s suspended in air–pretty neat. The lack of condensation is also a nice side-effect of this construction. Given that I’m doing this experiment in the middle of winter, I don’t think condensation will be too noticeable on any glass. Finally, having the double-wall construction means your hand won’t get cold (or hot) from your beverage and vice-versa.

Initial conditions and Procedure:

  • Glass 1: Luigi Bormioli Duo double-wall drinking glass
  • Glass 2: Triumph Brewing Company pint glass
  • Beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager (…it’s cheap)
  • Beer chilled in fridge for 16 hours. Beer chilled an additional 25 minutes in the freezer prior to measurements to increase the temperature range.
  • Both beer glasses stored at the same temperature.
  • Ambient room temperature kept at 71 F +/- 2 F.
  • Equivalent amounts of beer poured into each glass and left for 75 minutes
  • Temperature probe placed at roughly the same spot in each glass, not touching the side.
  • Beer temperature measured every 20 seconds for 75 minutes: 225 total data points each
  • Beer consumed — for purely scientific reasons

Collecting Data:

 

Results:

For some strange reason, the starting temperatures were about 2 degrees off. The figure below shows temperature versus time for the standard glass, in red, and the double wall glass, in blue. I also plotted a linear trendline with its corresponding equation on the plot. The temperature change for the double wall glass was significantly less than that of the standard glass.

Figure: Temperature Rise

Conclusion:

Based on the results above, the double wall glass provided approximately 30% better insulation than the standard drinking glass. The bottom line: after 75 minutes of collecting data, the beer in the double wall glass was much more enjoyable, again, from a purely scientific point of view.

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7 Responses to “Double Wall Drinking Glasses: The Best Beer Glass?”  

  1. 1 Grant Pitel

    Fantastic article Adam. Good Job. I might have to go buy myself some of these glasses now.

  2. 2 Bill

    I just found out about these and was looking into them last week – on another web site, most people who bought Bodum glasses said they were so fragile they arrived broken, or shattered when ice was dropped into them…

    What impressions do you have about these glasses? Are there any glass (not ‘polycarbonate’) that are sturdy?

    Thanks – very timely article :-)

  3. 3 Adam Pitel

    Thanks for your comment Bill. We actually have the short version of the Bodum glasses as well. My impression, and what I’ve read from the Amazon reviews as well, these Duos glasses seem to be a bit more sturdy than the Bodum glasses. Needless to say, they are definitely more fragile than your standard glass. Let me know how it turns out if you end up getting them.

  4. 4 Sheryl

    I had to laugh when I saw you qualified the beer choice with “…it’s cheap.”

    Nice article–but it is incomplete. Specifically, it’s missing your fire hydrant review system introduced in the brewery article. :)

  5. 5 Grant Pitel

    I ordered four small and two pint sized Bodum glasses from Amazon. The pint glasses arrived broken. Amazon was very good about replacing/refunding the purchase. Unfortunately, these were gifts so I had to quickly find a replacement. I purchased other pint glasses at a Linen’n Things going out of business sale. Both glass manufacturers were reviewed in this article.
    Sure, you could get polycarbonate that is more durable. You could also put it in a thermos that is more durable and a better insulator. However, neither will impress the ladies. Glass is the way to go.

  6. 6 Emily

    I’ve never given this a try, but I think it’s about time I do.

  7. 7 Ash

    The reason the initial temperature was different is more than likely due to the overall heat capacity of the glasses. Since both glasses were at room temp, they both warmed the beer up slightly, however the non-insulated glass has a higher mass of glass in contact with the beer, therefore the beer will warm up slightly more.

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