Want to Cut Back on Drinking? Change Your Glass

A new study from the University of Bristol states that the shape of your beer glass determines how fast (and how much) you imbibe
Which glass encourages faster drinking? The answer may surprise you.

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Do you find yourself consuming just a few too many beers over the course of the night? Might be time to switch glasses: a new study from the University of Bristol charges that the shape of the beer glass has a big impact on how much you drink. 

Researchers gave the test group of "social beer drinkers" lager and nonalcoholic lemonade in two different glasses: a curved flute glass and a straight glass. While they watched a "nonemotional" video, the participants drank while researchers measured how much they imbibed. So which glass encouraged faster (and more) drinking? The curved flute glass, no doubt. The group using the curved flute glasses finished their drink in about seven minutes, compared to 11 minutes for those using the straight beer glasses. And it held the same for both lemonade and lager drinkers: the curved glass had an impact. 

Experimental psychologist Angela Attwood told the Science publication she believed the reason was because the "halfway point" in a curved beer glass is somewhat ambiguous. Her solution is to mark a clear halfway point on curved lager glasses. "We can't tell people not to drink, but we can give them a little more control," she said. Others have questioned the study, saying that the test group reported to drink about 50 units of alcohol, edging the line of "social drinkers." Still, we'll be extra aware of what beer glasses we get at the bar. 

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