Image Courtesy of Pete Hopkins on Flickr[/caption] The evolution of the German beer stein has been a tale of love and labor in the name of beer. The stein was originally a stone mug used to hold plentiful amounts of beer. As a matter of fact, the word “stein” literally translates to “stone.” The stein was characterized not just by its masculine handle and stone craftsmanship, but also by its tall, elegant lid. But where did such a specific design come from for these beer steins?
The use of the stein actually came as a result of the Bubonic Plague of the 14th century. During this period, all stoneware containers needed to have lids in order to protect food and beverages from contamination. Common stone mugs then had lids installed. Therefore, the beer stein was born.
After the Bubonic Plague had passed and lids were no longer necessary for the mugs, the production of lidded beer steins still continued. After all, they had become a well-ingrained part of German culture. Therefore, the production of basic mugs and beer steins continued simultaneously. During the 19th century, glass material was incorporated into the mass production of mugs: giving us the mug form that we are used to today.
Here at Oktoberfesthaus, we put great value into the stein. This traditional mug is not only a part of German history, but the design and aesthetic of the stein is just a beautiful thing. Oktoberfesthaus has nearly 250 beer steins in our online store.
Today we would like to share our ten favorite beer steins and mugs with you, all available at our store:
1. The .5-Liter HB Hofbrauhaus Munchen Dimpled Glass
This is the officially licensed Oktoberfest beer mug in the “Masskrug” style. This mug is imported from Germany and has the same dimpled style as those in Oktoberfest. Therefore there’s no need for you to take up baggage space buying one if you go to Germany. We’ve got you covered.
2. The 1-Liter Paulaner Dimpled Glass Beer Stein
The 1-liter Paulaner is for drinkers who don’t mess around. Imported from Germany and standing 8 inches tall, this traditional dimpled Masskrug mug tells everyone that you love a good beer…and lots of it.
3. The .4-Liter Glass Stein with Pewter Badge
This glass stands 6 inches tall and has a smooth, tapered feel with a reflective starburst design shining up from the bottom. In addition to the traditional pewter lid to top off this glass stein, the Bavarian crest badge is embroidered on the side for the ultimate mark of heritage with your drinking.
4. The Germany Glass German Beer Stein
This .4 liter glass stein stands over 7 inches tall and is intricately painted with the German flag colors. The design wraps around the mug like a continuous mosaic and even has a crowned eagle embroidery on the side. If there’s anything you don’t mess with, it’s a man drinking from an eagle-embroidered stein.
5. The Luminarc 14 oz. Koblenz Beer Mug
Are you more of a minimalist? That’s okay! Oktoberfesthaus has just the mug for you. The Luminarc holds 14 ounces of and is made of durable, dishwasher-safe glass. The Luminarc also stands over five inches tall and comes with a fancy box for gifting or collecting.
6. The Zoeller & Born Deutschland Germany Eagle with State
Oh, my. Do you see that design? This stone beer stein holds .125 liters, is manufactured by premiere German stein company Zoeller and Born, and features beautifully engraved lilies and state crests for each region of Germany.
7. The .5-Liter Porcelain Wedding Beer Stein
Looking for the perfect gift for a German wedding? There’s no better glassware than the Porcelain Wedding Beer Stein. This stein holds a half-liter, stands 8.25 inches tall, was handcrafted in Germany, and is even decorated with a wedding scene outside of a romantic German church!
8. The German Ceramic Bierfest Stein with Lid
This ceramic stein stands 7.5 inches tall and holds a half-liter of beer. This stein also features an artisan image of bierfest debauchery: a man in lederhosen dancing with beer while a woman in a dirndl stands in an unimpressed pose. Is there a better design to pay homage to the Germans?
9. The Zoeller & Born Black Deutschland Eagle City
This beautiful stein is a refined version of the original steins used centuries ago. Made of bold stoneware, this stein holds .75 liters and was handcrafted by Zoeller & Born, the premiere stein company of Germany.
10. The King-Werks Hofbrauhaus Munich Oktoberfest German
The Hofbrauhaus is 8.25 inches tall, holds .4 liters of beer, and is made of the finest German stoneware. The stein design also features the Bavarian flag and a band of lederhosen gentlemen playing some beautiful Bavarian folk music…or maybe they’re drunk and it sounds awful. Either way, this is a celebratory scene that should accompany you every time you drink.