For centuries, the demitasse has held dominion over espresso as its assumed vessel of choice. But who says that espresso can’t be served in whatever you want it to be served in? Daring cafes around the world are ditching the demitasse in favor of drinkware traditionally found in the bar cabinet. And who says you have to stop there? Cut-glass tumblers and flutes of fine sparkling waters for everyone!
Just please stay focused on, you know, making actually tasty espresso, and giving engaging, approachable service to your guests. What could be worse than pairing artfully curated glassware with lousy espresso and service frontage? Quelle horreur!
Here are a few of our favorite demitasse alternatives. What are some of yours?
The wide rim and short stem of these classic champagne glasses make for a stunning presentation. Plus, the early 20th century glassware will fit right in with those Edison bulbs. The whole thing is very Edisanal, when you think about it. This vessel also allows for the espresso to cool before being enjoyed–because you know, that’s a thing. $92.99 / case of 36.
The lowball is a sturdy glass that will take your cortados to the next level. Plus if you tipple, it’ll be nice to have this glassware on hand for a post-shift bourbon. $42.99 / case of 36.
Used in cafes like Sterling in Portland, Oregon, the Glencairn glass is marvelous, and can be conducive to a more deliberate sort of espresso drinking experience. Turn heads, stop traffic, go nuts, and take a page from the Sterling service playbook while you’re at it — customer interactions here (and at Sterling’s sister cafe, Coffeehouse Northwest) are consistently top-notch. $23 / set of four.
When you want a little more girth than the coupe can provide, the Manhattan glass is ready and willing. The curves on this baby are crowd-pleasers. It’s available at places like The Boston Shaker for $6.50 / a piece.