design london pubs

Dimple Glasses

dimple.jpgIn yesterday’s post, what I didn’t mention was that the Old Monk is serving its real ale in old fashioned handled dimple glasses. I gather that a couple of would-be trendy pubs in the Islington area have started to do the same thing.

This is an interesting affectation which seems designed to appeal simultaneously to the old school beer fan and the retro-ironic hipster. I suspect we’re going to see a lot more of it about.

I gather the reason for their demise was that they were relatively expensive to make, prone to breaking, and hard to stack. Those arguments hardly hold up now that fans of German wheat beers or Belgian obscurities are getting their favourite tipples served in ever-more elaborately shaped and printed glasses, some of them a foot tall, others as delicate as egg shells.

Mild in particular tastes a little bit nicer out of a dimple — well, it does to me, anyway, because that’s how my grandad used to drink it. Let’s hope that by May, when every decent pub in the land will have a mild on, the dimple has made its triumphant comeback everywhere.

Picture from, who also sell dimples if you fancy a few to use at home.


6 replies on “Dimple Glasses”

The dimple is an abomination, I associate it with Watneys Red Barrel. That’ll be the next thing to make a comeback and then God help us!

They’re pretty common these days. Most of the M&B Castle pubs have them, as does my local the Betsey.

NB. I’ve never seen or heard the word “hipster” used by someone from this country!

I find hipster a very useful word. Americans have started using “cheers” and “wanker” in recent years. Do you know the concept of the “run up” (as in, “the run up to the Iraq war”) was unknown in America until the last ten years? The internet is prompting the reconvergence of our languages, apparently.

One of my company in the pub drinks out of a dimple glass, but he has the shakes! For me, Paul has exactly the right word for them. They are just too thick walled to properly taste beer.

Hipster referred to a style of trouser when I was growing up. Oh how I crazed my parents for a pair as a groovy ten year old. That was in the days when ‘fab’ and ‘gear’ were ubiquitous teen-terrific parlance!

Although problems with stacking did make them unpopular, landlords also didn’t like the fact that a smashed glass often made a useful weapon out of the handle. They do have nostalgic appeal but give me a tulip glass anytime. Much more tactile. When standing for long periods, you were always fighting gravity with the beer beer in a dimple glass.

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