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Whisky, the world's most complex spirit, is a drink to be sipped, nosed and slowly savoured.
And yet ironically, while much is made of brandy, champagne, wine and beer to the extent that they all have their own distinct glasses, whisky ended up getting the short shrift and could be found served in anything from tumblers to goblets.
Until of course, Raymond Davidson, the founder of Glencairn decided it was about time someone designed a proper whisky glass; he envisioned a glass that would encourage the user to appreciate the nose of the whisky as well as the palate but would be robust and functional in a bar environment. So he designed the perfect glass for whisky and then forgot all about it for 20 years till his sons, Paul and Scott, found the design and decided to take it to the master blenders for their suggestions.
With their help and support, the Davidson family revived the whisky glass and the rest, as they say, is history. Today the Glencairn Glass is unequivocally known as the 'official glass' for whisky, developed by the whisky industry for the whisky industry.
The roots of the Glencairn Glass lie in the traditional nosing glasses used by blenders and distillers around the world when analysing their casks and blends - the sherry 'copita'. But termed as too fragile and awkward for general consumer use, Glencairn made several pertinent changes and additions to the copita's design which allowed for a better and richer whisky savouring experience.
The mouth was tapered to allow an ease of drinking not associated with traditional nosing glasses whilst capturing the aromas on the nose. The bowl was widened to allow for the fullest appreciation of the whisky's colour and the solid base was designed to be easy on the hand.
Its size and shape was perfected to accommodate a 35ml pour, allowing for addition of water but keeping an optimum amount of liquid in contact with air to allow the aromas to develop.
The Glencairn Glass has won accolades from around the world including the Queens Award, the highest award for business in the UK and is accepted as the only glass a true whisky connoisseur will consider pouring his single malt in.