Spiegelau collaborates with Bell’s Brewery to create a new glass for wheat beers

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By: Eric Strader
ericstrader69@gmail.com

Eric Strader

Earlier this week I was drying my freshly thrown pottery in the sunny backyard. Today, however, I am enjoying the snow and thinking about Bell’s Winter White Ale. Just before the snow starting flying in Michiana, I received a Bell’s Winter White package and it was just like Christmas.  

The package contained two cans of Winter White Ale, a regular Bell’s pint glass and one of the new American Wheat-Witbier glasses that was unveiled at the General Store yesterday.

The challenge presented by the brewery was to pour a can into each of the glasses and compare which glass provided the better drinking experience with this style of beer.

Bell’s Brewery has been working in partnership with renowned Austrian glassware manufacturer Spiegelau to develop this new glass specifically designed for wheat beers. Riedel owner Georg Riedel and Spiegelau Vice President Matthew Rutkowski led several workshops and tasting panels throughout the process.

“As with previous workshops, we challenged conventional thinking and presumption of what a wheat beer glass should look like. … The new glass works to bring faint aromas into sharp focus,” Rutkowski said.

Spiegelau has previously collaborated with other breweries including Dogfish Head and Sierra Nevada for an IPA-specific glass and Left Hand Brewing and Rogue Ales for a stout-specific glass.

Recognizing the need to develop better drinking vessels for one the world’s most popular beer varieties, wheat, Spiegelau approached Bell’s about a possible collaboration.

Bell’s Vice President Laura Bell and Director of Operations John Mallet participated with other brewery experts by tasting Bell’s wheat beers from 50 different glasses pulled from Spiegelau’s glassware archive. They were able to narrow the choice down to 12.

Another round of tastings, and the group was able to identify the one glass design that had the most profound effect on the aromas and flavor profiles of both American and German style wheat beers.

“The chance to work with Spiegelau was an exciting opportunity for us,” Bell said.

“John and I met with Georg and Matt in Portland to taste wheat beers from a variety of different glasses, discussing pros and cons of each. To be involved in a project that enhances our core wheat beers was a tremendous experience. This glass will allow craft beer enthusiasts to enjoy well crafted, very drinkable, but also complex beers on another level,” she said.

This new glass is designed to elevate the experience of drinking Bell’s Oberon Ale and Winter White, as well as other wheat beers.The hope is that through this collaboration, the new Spiegelau/Bell’s American Wheat-Witbier glass will become the standard glassware for enjoying all wheat beers.

The Bell’s Wheat Glass is now available to purchase online at bellsbeer.com as well as at the Bell’s General Store, located adjacent to the Eccentric Café at 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave. in downtown Kalamazoo.  Bell’s Winter White Ale is available throughout Michiana in 12 oz. bottles and 16 oz. cans.

On Tuesday, Nov. 18, Bell’s Eccentric Café is hosting a wheat glass release party beginning at 7 p.m. The first 25 guests will receive a complimentary glass. Glasses will also be available to purchase for $9 and those who purchase it can enjoy their first 16 oz. pour of Winter White for $1.

All guests can enjoy pours of Winter White for $2 all night.

Now for your chance to win your own Bell’s Wheat-Witbier glass. Here is your trivia question.  

What Bell’s beer will be featured at the Kalamazoo Wings hockey game on Saturday, Nov. 15. And what color will the ice be for the game?

Answer one question correctly and get your name entered once. Answer both questions correctly, and get your name entered twice.  

Send your answers to EricStrader69@gmail.com by 5 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 20.  Two names will be drawn at random. Winners will be notified by email and prizes will be available to pick up at DIY Coffee and Ale Supply at 114 E. Washington St., Goshen.

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