Earlier this summer, while vacationing—and drinking—in beautiful, scenic Plymouth, Mass., I saw something at a bar that I’d never seen before: a built-in bar-top glass rinser. The bar was the New World Tavern in downtown Plymouth, and I’ve since seen these odd glass-rinser-thingies at a number of craft beer bars, so I thought I’d do a little investigating.
The first thing I learned about the strange water-blasting mechanisms is that they’re not new. They are apparently quite popular in some European locales, but they’re just now starting to catch on in Boston and other American cities, as far as I can tell.
The idea is simple: Bartenders flip a glass upside before filling it, hold the glass over the rinser, press down on the appropriate area with the glass’s rim and then water automatically shoots up and rinses the glass of dust, debris or any dishwashing soap that may have not have been washed clean.
The makers of these bar-top rinsers also say they result in a better pour, because beer pours better into a wet glass. This results in less friction when the liquid slides down the inside of the glass. And the rinsers also “encourage head retention, and the cold temperature of the water helps to cool the glass,” according to kegworks.com.
Frankly, the glass rinsers look damn cool too, and they’ll not only grab customer attention and draw a lot of questions, but also lead
annoying curious bloggers to write silly blog posts about them.
The rinsers can be purchase as standalone units or as part of a larger “drip tray.” Standalone “undercounter mount glass rinsers” cost $200 on micromatic.com, but interested bar owners will likely have to drop significantly more scratch to install the required in-line water supply system.