Published on March 9th, 2015 | by0
The NEAT Glass
NEAT Glass Quick Stats:
- Eliminates nose burn and nose fatigue
- Intensifies aromas and flavor profiles
- Enhances your drinking enjoyment
- True Tasting Glass
- Versatile enough for any spirit or hobbyist
- Made in USA
- Trademarks are property of Arsilica, Inc. NV
I began drinking whiskey about nine years ago and in that time I’ve sampled plenty of spirits in all sorts of glassware. I think I experienced a fairly standard progression for anyone starting to take up tasting spirits as a hobby. Once I realized that whiskey was my spirit of choice I began acquiring several different glasses. I purchased various DOF (Double Old Fashioned) Glasses, High Ball Glasses, and about 7 years ago I purchased my first single malt whiskey glass. It was the first tasting specific glass I had ever purchased and was a decent little investment during my college years.
When Siz and I started Stogies on the Rocks a little over 3 years ago I began collecting snifters. Nothing atypical or out of the ordinary. Glencairn makes a rock solid snifter that’s affordable and readily available. I’ve used that for almost all of my reviews for both the website and personal use, until now.
I became aware of the NEAT Ultimate Spirits Glass about 6 months ago and have been wanting to give it a shot. About 3 weeks ago I sent an email to NEAT requesting information for a review. I can personally attest that the team at NEAT are a pleasure to talk to and work with. They were kind enough to send me some glasses to review and provided me with further information and background into their product.
I had wondered how legit the science was behind the product so when the glasses arrived I thought of sampling some bourbon with my good friend Chris Osters, who is a Physics teacher extraordinaire at a local high school here in Louisville. He has been known to be a little geeky with the science stuff from time to time so I felt that he would understand the science behind the glass as well as appreciate what it would provide for tasting a good bourbon. So, I packed up my gear and headed over to his place.
I’ve listed below the NEAT Science that’s provided with the glassware packaging:
- Engineered glassware to control and dissipate ethanol vapors away from the nose, unmasking and revealing hidden, subtle flavors and aromas
- NEAT is an acronym for Naturally Engineered Aroma Technology
- Science is based on the relationship between human physiology and molecular behavior, unlocking the deeper dimensions of distillation
- Wide bowl improves evaporation
- Curved sides promote swirling
- Smaller neck intensifies aromas
- Wide flare disperses alcohol vapors
- Rim centers nose over “sweet spot”
- “Sweet Spot” displays full aromas
After inspecting the glass while we were taking the pictures of the packaging and NEAT glass, neither Chris nor I could find any reason to dispute the science behind the shape of the glass and Chris found even more benefits to the construction of the glass.
I’ve listed below some of the additional observations we found:
- Shallower angles of glass sides keep whiskey on sides longer to amplify scent because it’s easier to evaporate your heavenly liquid of choice
- Surface area of whiskey resting in glass is greater than a typical snifter. Also allowing for more evaporation, netting more aroma
- Lighter molecules, such as ethanol vapors, will evaporate quicker because they’re easier to get moving. Heavier molecules hang in the center. Ethanol vapors, which represent the harsher experience when nosing a spirit, tend to stay on sides and the larger top allows the alcohol to escape on the sides to diminish the harsh alcohol smell
It was time to put the NEAT glass to the test. Chris and I chose Booker’s Bourbon to sample with both the NEAT glass and a typical snifter. We chose Booker’s because the particular bottle we possessed was the highest proof whiskey we had on hand at 128 proof, or 64% alcohol. We really wanted to see the difference in the tasting experience and felt that if the NEAT glass functioned as well as the science insisted that the NEAT glass would make the nosing more pleasant and accommodating.
We poured 1.5 ounces of Booker’s in both glasses and let it open up for about 20 minutes. Day and Night. The two experiences were completely different. I was astounded how much it lightened up Booker’s. It was startling how easy it was to get the aromas from the NEAT glass and there was zero impact from heavy handed ethanol vapors that cause nose burn and fatigue. While I was able to locate the same aromas in each glass it was much less effort in the NEAT glass.
Benefits and Collective Thoughts
- If you move your nose around within the opening of the glass you get different scents.
- It’s true that the sweet spot is indeed right over the middle of the glass.
- When you get into whiskey the initial harshness can be a deterrent to someone seeking to be a hobbyist with spirits. The NEAT glass cuts out a lot of the “nose burn initiation.” It took almost a year when I started drinking bourbon to smell through the strong alcohol presence.
- Anyone with a good palate and nose can locate flavors and aromas with this glass.
- There is flexibility built into the glass. The top of the glass allows you to get closer or further from the opening to get more or less intense scents. For example, with Booker’s Bourbon you could back off the opening and smell all scents but a lighter whiskey you might want to get closer. That’s very cool and a clear advantage over a typical snifter.
- When drinking you have to tip the glass a good bit to taste. Functionally, there are glasses that are easier to drink out of.
- Really great last sip! Even when the glass is almost empty there is still a good amount of “whiskey legs” clinging to the sides of the glass from swirling. This creates a flavor and aroma bomb when you almost tip the glass upside down to get the last drink.
This is a true tasting glass. If you are a hobbyist, like myself, you will find yourself using this when you are sampling something new or revisiting an old favorite. I’m super impressed. It’ll become my new default glass for formal reviews and first experiences. I’ll still use some of my favorite snifters from time to time for comparisons sake but I can see why the NEAT glass has gotten so much traction within the spirits community so quickly. This glass is versatile for experts and newbies alike. I love the thought and approach to the engineering of this glass and I can attest that it lives up to its claims.
NEAT has received several awards and has been named the official tasting glass of several spirit competitions and I’ve listed some below. Pretty. Darn. Impressive.
- OFFICIAL GLASS SAN FRANCISCO WORLD SPIRITS COMPETITION
- OFFICIAL GLASS NEW YORK WORLD SPIRITS COMPETITION
- OFFICIAL GLASS SAN DIEGO INTERNATIONAL SPIRITS COMPETITION
- OFFICIAL GLASS CONSUMER RUM JURY OF MIAMI RUM RENAISSANCE
- OFFICIAL GLASS SIP AWARDS INTERNATIONAL CONSUMER TASTING
- OFFICIAL GLASS CRAFT SPIRITS AWARDS INTERNATIONAL
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