Brandy Balloon
Glass Brandy Balloon
   Brandy Balloon | Crystal Balloon

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Brandy Balloon

A Brandy Balloon is a short stem glass crystal that is wide at bottom with a narrow top, and typically used for serving brandy or a similar liquor. People who enjoy drinking brandy also like the fruity taste of the alcoholic beverage as it is served in one of these glass works of art. Also called a brandy snifter, the balloon was probably originally designed and manufactured in the 16t century. Today's average size snifters hold about 6 to 8 ounces of liquid that is warmed by the palm of the hand as it is held. The amount of liquid that the balloons are designed to hold varies, ranging from 2 or 3 ounces, with even larger ones available.

The globular shape and narrow top of the crystal traps the aroma and fragrance of the drink, imparting a nice odor to those imbibing on the alcoholic beverage when they put their lips to the glass. When poured into and served from a balloon, the flavorings of herbs, spices, flowers and fruit are ready discernable to the olfactory senses. Warmed by the hand, the bouquets fill the bulbous glass and permeate the nose when the glass is raised and tipped. The after-dinner drinks grease dialogue between negotiating dealmakers and between artistic types, cutting deals and debating style and form.

Balloons can be used to serve Brandy, Cognac, liqueurs, and ales, especially pale type ales. Courvoisier, Peppermint Schnapps, Drambuie served neat, anise flavored drinks, Bailies Irish Cream served straight up and any un-iced drink will not be out place in taster's hand. Dessert wines that contain no additional flavorings, and high or low alcohol content spirits can easily be sipped from snifters. A fruity bouquet of scents and tastes, reminiscent of honeydew, vanilla, caramel, cinnamon, and nutmeg, might be a typical description of a liquor served in any of these types of glasses.

One need not look very far to realize that balloons come in a variety of popular brand names from different manufacturers. Among connoisseurs, names like Waterford, Ravenscrot and Lismore top the list, with the lismore pattern, a striking diamond cut inspired by Lismore Castle in Ireland, an undoubtedly well known classic form of balloon crystal.
   To chill your beer, buy kegerator accessories. For a smokey flavor, distill your liquor in oak whiskey barrels.