A seidel is a wide-mouthed glass mug with thick walls and a sturdy handle. They’re often dimpled and can be short and rounded or large and barrel shaped.
These beer mugs are made with thick, sturdy glass walls and a strong handle which makes them easy to hold and carry. They commonly hold about 20 ounces but larger versions certainly exist. Bigger, barrel shaped beer seidels can hold up to 44 ounces.
Seidels (especially the over-sized ones) are sometimes referred to as “steins” but steins are earthenware (vs glassware) and are much more ornate and decorative.
Benefits of a Seidel
The most immediate benefit of the seidel is it’s wide mouth. It provides you with plenty of space for taking deep sips while getting a good sense of the beer’s aroma. The glass’ thick walls, handle (should you use it) and short stature also provide a degree of insulation that help keep your beer at quaffable temperatures.
In practical terms the seidel is probably one of the most sturdy of all the beer glasses. With it’s thick glass walls and handle it’s not something that’s going to be easy to break. Due to its proportions this mug is also pretty difficult to tip over. The glass’ dimpling also makes it easier to hold. These glasses are pretty decent utility glasses for serving soda, floats or milkshakes to kids.
When it comes to the drinking experience there’s also something visceral about holding a beer seidel. They feel good to hold and to drink out of.
Frosted mugs are great for soda, frappes, and floats. Not for beer.
Avoid freezing or chilling seidels. As cool beer hits colder glass condensation can form leading to unintended moisture watering down your good beer. So skip chilling whenever possible!
What Beer Goes with a Seidel or Dimpled Mug?
Normally you’d pair porters, stouts, and german style lagers with a seidel. Beers with strong malty flavors and lower hop profiles are also great choices.
A seidel can also be used for serving cream ales, scotch ales and even rauchbiers. Basically anything with a medium to thick body.