Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Apr 3, 2012 01:57 PM

Plastic Barware - for the Pool

is there any brand that is decent for making some good mixed cocktails that are reusable to have out by the pool - for a bbq

or even a decent brand of dispoable glasses i wouldnt be interested in if nice

mainly looking for collins / coupe / rock glasses that will be better than every drink in a big red solo cup

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The best I've seen are Crate & Barrel's acrylic glasses. They have cocktail, margarita, wine, rocks, and other styles that seem perfect for outdoor, barefoot safe use. Not the most attractive things relative to glass ones, but infinitely better than Solo cups:

    3 Replies
    1. re: yarm

      All the "kitchen" stores these days cell acrylic glasses in the spring (Williams Sonoma, Crate and Barrel, Sur La Table, etc). They have come a long way and are all good around the pool. They are certainly thicker rimmed than a true glass - glass but they are much nicer than solo cups as yarm stated.

      Disposable glasses are thinner, so more "glass like" in that sense and you can buy heavier weighted disposable these days, so they aren't so flimsy. But I couldn't give you a brand. I've ordered them online for parties.

      Not recommending this site, it was just the first one I found in my bookmarks to show you some of the dispoables I've come across . . . .

      I still would go the acrylic route but . . . .

      1. re: thimes

        ah yes - sorry - from the other posts I was "mis-typing" - I have and use polycarbonate, not acrylic. Tougher, less likely to cloud, and less likely to get spider cracks in the dishwasher . . . . but still clear plastic to us lay people.

        1. re: thimes

          yep -- acrylic looks good for a few months, but it starts to look bad pretty quickly.

    2. at some of the restaurant supply stores they have polycarbonate glasses

      can anyone tell me the difference between the acrylic and polycarbonate? is one more "glass like" or is one have less of the bad plastic chemicals in them etc?

      1 Reply
      1. re: Dapuma

        Polycarbonate is lighter than acrylic and stronger. So it will have less of the weight of a real glass, making it more tippy, but it's less likely to chip or shatter (shattering is almost impossible- polycarbonate is what they use to make bulletproof panels, obviously much thicker) though it can scratch, probably more than acrylic. It does yellow over time, while acrylic does not, although some of the info blurbs for polycarbonate glasses say they don't yellow. I get the impression that polycarbonate is the higher-quality option.

        Both insulate better than glass, so your drinks will stay colder longer when you have guests holding them by the bowl rather than the stem as is proper :)

      2. REI and Campmor carry good glasses in various shapes made of lexan, I believe. I have a set of them that we use for picnics, as the stems detach and the whole thing nests together -- no more snapped stems in my picnic bag.

        My favorite outdoor wine glasses, believe it or not, came from Walmart - very nice shape, very thin rim -- and I think $3 apiece. (I was a little surprised, too -- but happy to have found nice ones for so little!)

        1. i also came across

          seems like they cater more to the nightclub bar vendors, however they do sell some of their glasses in groups of 6, which would work

          does anyone in the industry have any experience with them and could compare them to the acrylic glasses commonly avaliable

          thanks for the info on the camping places sunshine, i never would have though to look at companies like that for glasses

          3 Replies
          1. re: Dapuma

            Barluxe looks pretty cool, too.

            There's also a new glass (actually glass, but unbreakable) called Kwarx -- the glasses look nice.

            Amazon also has a kajillion listings under polycarbonate or unbreakable +glasses

            1. re: sunshine842

              kwarx is crazy expensive and seems to be mainly wine glasses

              barluxe uses

              Eastman Tritan copolyester

              they say there is no bpa in the glasses - they state it is better than acrylic but im not engineer so i dont know what the specs are other than they seem nice on the website - i don't think they are much more expensive than the crate and barrel and they make a proper rock glass and at least a glass that looks somewhat like a collins glass - think i might give those a try unless someone else has a better idea

              1. re: Dapuma

                if they look half as nice in person as they do in the photos on the website, they'll be great....not having a "plasticky" feel would be the cherry on top.

          2. I ordered the Barluxe glasses and they are every bit as nice as the website makes them look

            They have a good weight to them and are weighted to be heavy at the bottom so they aren't going to tip over easily and they passed the wife test which is as follows:

            These look nice are you sure they are unbreakable - then she pounded the glass against the countertop very hard - no damage - oh these are nice we should get more

            I got the pint / and the rock / collins style glass

            I wouldn't replace my real glasses with these but for the pool or picnic i don't think these can be beat - and they certainly are a lot nicer than what crate and barrel sells

            8 Replies
            1. re: Dapuma

              Update on glasses after washing and using them several times

              They get beat up really easy and the clarity is gone after a few washes, one of the cups has a fingerprint permanently melded with the cup no number of washes will get it out

              Pretty disappointing - they seem no better than any other acrylic glass as far as multiple washes go - however the first time you use them they are great heh

              1. re: Dapuma

                Ooh, sorry to hear that!

                I'm not advocating throwing good money after bad -- but my copolymer (not lexan as I stated) wine glasses are still looking great, even after being packed and hauled around in a picnic bag and washed in the dishwasher.

                Campmor also carried some stainless models -- which would be definitely unbreakable, and decidedly different.

                1. re: sunshine842

                  Besides camping shops like Campmor, marine shops carry unbreakable goblets and such.

                  1. re: paulj

                    only problem there is the affinity for adding an extra 50% to the price of anything labeled "marine" :D

                2. re: Dapuma

                  Dapuma - I’m am with BarLuxe came across this post. I am sorry to hear that you had an issue with your BarLuxe Tritan drinkware. We really do appreciate and listen to customer feedback. Let me assure you that I not only work here but personally used our glasses exclusively at home and love them. While no plastic is scratch proof, I can tell you I have dishwashed mine hundreds of times for over a year now and they still look fantastic – clear and glass like. (I also have two young boys so they get a workout.)

                  After hearing of the issue you had with fingerprints, we have been in contact with engineers at Eastman, the manufacturer of the Tritan resin used in our drinkware, and learned that one of the culprits of such an issue can be sunscreen. The UV absorbing compounds in many of today’s sunscreens (especially the spray type) can damage many plastics such as polycarbonate, acrylic and Tritan. We have read about such damage to products like e-Readers, car interiors, pool lounge chairs, and such after using sunscreen. Another well known company, Tervis, who makes the popular insulated tumblers also from Tritan, has an FAQ about this exact topic on their website.

                  We love our products and want happy customers so would like to replace your drinkware free of charge. Please either call at 855-227-5893 or email me at and we will arrange to do so.

                  1. re: jconn

                    DEET (mosquito repellent) is also well known for damaging plastics like acrylic.

                    1. re: jconn

                      Thanks I will be in contact shortly

                      There was a lot of sunscreen at the pool party

                      1. re: jconn

                        Thanks, i got the shipping confirmation today that the replacement glasses were on the way

                        Appreciate it, I will post back on how the non sunscreened glasses hold up