A coupe glass and a martini glass may look similar, but they have a few key differences that are important for any home bartender to know. After all, the nuances are what will wow your guests.
Let’s look at a coupe glass vs. martini glass, which is best to use, and a small sampling of the best of each to add to your barware collection.
- What is a Coupe Glass?
- What is a Martini Glass?
- Which Should I Use?
- Best Coupe and Martini Glasses
- Bottom Line
What is a Coupe Glass?
A coupe glass is a piece of glassware with a unique, shallow curved bowl with a long stem and a circular base. It is used for many cocktails that are served chilled without ice. The capacity depends on the brand, though most are on the smaller side, making them good for a classic cocktail with less volume.
These glasses also provide a vintage fancy drinking experience. They originated in France in the 1700s, and the height of their popularity in the United States was between the 1930s and 1970s.
Now, like all things that were popular in the past, they have made a comeback and are featured on many American bar menus, especially those which specialize in hand-crafted cocktails.
What is a Martini Glass?
A martini glass is a cocktail glass invented in the Prohibition era to easily get rid of evidence if there were a raid. The wide rim allowed for quick disposal. This is just one theory, but either way, it was designed as a modern take on coupe glasses.
Traditional martini glasses are v-shaped with a wide rim, long stem, and circular base. They often have a higher capacity as well, especially nowadays. A v-shaped martini glass is the most common shape you’ll see, though there are several variations.
For instance, a Nick and Nora glass is quite similar in a shape that’s between a coupe glass and a martini glass and is used for cocktails that are shaken or stirred.
Which Should I Use?
So, since these two cocktail glasses are similar, the big question is which one you should use to serve a drink and when. You can use either glass for drinks served chilled without ice as the stem allows you to prevent them from getting warm because of your body heat.
Though it is really based on preference, we recommend using martini glasses rather than a coupe for drinks with more volume as they tend to be bigger. However, the wide rim makes cocktails splash out and can be a bit messy, which can be a hassle.
In our opinion, if you love to entertain, you should have a set of both, so let’s take a look at some of the best choices.
Best Coupe and Martini Glasses
Luxe Coupe Glass Set from The TAG Store
We love the timeless shape of these Luxe Coupe Glasses from The TAG Store. They are made of BPA and lead-free hand-blown crystalline glass that is dishwasher safe. The rim is thin, making garnishes easy as well. Each glass holds eight ounces, and it comes in a set of four glasses with a stainless steel mixing spoon included, all for around $60. These are our favorite glasses for champagne!
Vintage Art Deco Coupe Glasses from Glassique Cadeau
These Vintage Art Deco Glasses from Glassique Cadeau are made from the finest crystal glass by award-winning glass artists. They have a seven-ounce capacity and elegant retro design totally reminiscent of the prohibition era. In fact, they come in a 1920s-inspired storage box lined with silky cloth and molded to the shape to protect them. The set of four is about $65 and makes the perfect glass for a whiskey sour.
Mikasa Cheers Martini Glasses
Mikasa is known for all of its homewares, but especially its glassware. Their Cheers Glass Set has a traditional v shape and is made of European crystal glass that is precision etched with fun designs. The set comes with four ten-ounce glasses, each with a different playful design. This way, no one gets their glasses mixed up. Snag these for a gin martini for about $50.
Hand Blown Martini Glass from Lumi & Numi
The Hand Blown Glass set from Lumi & Numi is the epitome of class, elegance, and sophistication. The glasses are made of hand-blown lead-free crystal, with a thin 24K rim, timeless ridges, and an optic finish for extra sparkle. It comes with two 10-ounce glasses as well as two gold-plated cocktail picks. This set makes the perfect gift for many occasions and is gorgeous to display on a bar cart, especially since you can usually get it for about $40.
Can you drink a martini from a coupe glass?
Yes, you can drink a martini from a coupe-style glass.
What is a coupe glass for?
A coupe-style glass is for sparkling wine and other chilled cocktails without ice.
What can I use if I don’t have a coupe glass?
You can use martini glasses or rocks glass if you don’t have a coupe glass.
Both coupe glasses and martini glasses are the perfect shape and size for many classic cocktails like a Gimlet with lime juice, simple syrup, and gin or a Manhattan, the delicious combination of sweet vermouth, Bourbon whiskey, and bitters.
If you only have a wine glass or a few random cocktail glasses, consider getting coupe or martini glasses to level up your home bar and how you serve guests a cocktail.