Collecting takes many forms, and in the world of beer collectibles, or breweriana, one of the most popular collectibles are the vessel by which beer is imbibed. From the early days of earthenware steins to crystal goblets, beer has been enjoyed in a variety of vessels. In recent times, the glass that most accurately symbolizes good beer is the pint glass, and many brew pubs and breweries have released their own logo-ed pint glasses, which are treasured collectibles for fans of their brand.
The number and variety of collectable items related to beer is staggering. From beer signs dating back to prohibition days, to antique steins from Europe, to painted bar mirrors, to modern day pint glasses, breweriana is seen from coast to coast. Of the many forms breweriana has taken, it is the pint glass which has now come to the fore of the modern collector’s shelf.
A look at the collector’s market for antique beer collectables will show you just how much beer vessels can fetch. Some go for as little as $5, but the older items can fetch hundreds or even a thousand dollars! Of course, you may not be around by the time your pint glasses are worth that much, but collecting is best when it is about enjoying what you have, not selling it!
These days, most commercial beer makers have produced pint glasses with their logo emblazoned upon them. These are sold to the public at many breweries, and also to commercial bars, restaurants, and suppliers in the food and beverage industry. The most collectable of these is the limited edition pint glass. Usually minted in order to celebrate a special seasonal beer, these are sold at the brewery and at beer garden festivals as well.
Commemorative pint glasses like these are great reminders of good times and good beer. But not all commemorative pint glasses are produced for beer. Many events are now making their own commemorative pint glasses as part of a lucrative merchandising strategy. Events like Phoenix’s World Invitational Joust, Sports clubs, and even bands are producing pint glasses to commemorate shows, parties, and seasons. In this way, pint glasses are beginning to move past the realm of breweriana into larger scopes of collectables.
It is nice to have some different pint glasses around for social events as well. A glass like the Phoenix’s World Invitational Joust commemorative pint glass can be a great conversation starter! Glasses from local brewpubs can also remind people of good times they had there. “Remember when…”
Often, a set of pint glasses will have a matching beer tap handle. For those breweriana fans that own their own home draft beer system, these tap handles can add a nice touch to your serving. There are many places on-line that sell different beer tap handles, and on ebay you can even find sets of matching pint glasses that come with the beer tap handle.
Collecting pint glasses is a common practice among home brewers and home bar owners. Keeping an eye out for unique and interesting pint glasses can enhance your home bar experience and that of you guests – so keep an eye out for ‘em!