Chimney glasses are a unique species of tall, narrow glassware with a design that differentiates them from the Old Fashioned or other short, wide, bucket-style glassware also commonly found in bars. They come in several forms—Collins glasses, highball glasses and champagne flutes, to name a few—and all provide the tall, narrow environment central to the purpose: to retain carbonation.
To see a chimney in action, pour some champagne—no, wait, that would be cruel; pour some seltzer—into a bowl, then pour some into a tall, narrow glass. It won’t take long before you will see the results of this simple science project: a bowl of flat seltzer on one hand, and a flute of still-carbonated water on the other. The lesson, of course, is simple: Next time you’re topping a drink with soda, or mixing something with sparkling wine, think chimney.
Devotee of all things mixed (and the U.S. Bartenders Guild’s Nevada chapter vice president) Andrew Pollard says chimney glasses are an essential cocktail etiquette.
“Not only does it meet the needs of a thirsty soul searching for a sharp, crisp, bubbly concoction, but it also is visually appealing when ‘dressed’ right,” he says, noting, “In a long cocktail you have the ability to stretch the aesthetic value with colors, herbs, fruit, bubbles, etc.”