Collecting: Small Glasses

As we tiptoe into September and summer's end, a favorite pre-dinner aperitif is a nice glass of chilled fino sherry and a bowl of olives or salted almonds; when company arrives, we pour the sherry into small mismatched glasses and serve on a tray for a lovely presentation. Over the years, the tiny glass collection has grown and has proved to be a delightful addition to our usual cups and glasses.

Small glasses are fun to collect because they’re usually inexpensive, don’t take up too much room and are easy to find at flea markets or thrift stores. They’re also versatile: If you can’t get past sherry’s prim reputation (and you really should), then try using them for knocking back tequila shots or sipping fiery liquors like grappa or Fernet Branca.

Other ways we've used them over the years: as vases for single blooms or herb sprigs, votives for tea light candles, vessels for desserts like sabayon or chocolate mousse or for small amounts of condiments like hot sauce and mustard or for jams at a fancy tea.

(Image: Dana)

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Dana Velden has just finished writing her first book: Finding Yourself in the Kitchen: Meditations and Recipes from a Mindful Cook which is based on her Weekend Meditation posts from The Kitchn. (Rodale Press, September, 2015) She lives in Oakland, CA.