About this project
Meet the glass that changed whisky.
The Norlan Whisky Glass has been developed through a process of combining fluid dynamics modeling and bio-mimicry, out of a love for whisky matched with a frustration by the poor glassware available to whisky enthusiasts.
By marrying a scientifically performing inside with an aesthetically beautiful outside, our glass is designed to capture whisky’s complex perfumes and deliver them to the senses better than any existing product.
FEATURES OF THE NORLAN WHISKY GLASS
INSIDE THE NORLAN WHISKY GLASS
Similar to wine, whisky is made up of hundreds of compounds, and with proper aeration the volatile undesirable elements will evaporate faster than the desirable, aromatic and flavorful ones, thus increasing the concentration of the aromatics.
Through specially developed protrusion forms inside the glass—adapted through studying bio-mimicry—when swirled around the glass the fluid forms a standing wave shape, which increases the surface to air ratio and rate of oxidization. The effect here is that considerably more ethanol evaporates. This resulting reduction in volatility allows the whisky to become significantly more expressive. This feature is an invention of the Norlan glass; no other whisky glass will do this for you.
The second main performance feature is the shape of the inner walls, which close as they rise and then flare out again so as not to hit the nose. The height and diameter of the smallest aperture focuses the aromatics to the nose while simultaneously diffusing the ethanol away from the face, fantastically improving the taste of your whisky.
WHAT EXISTING WHISKY GLASSES GET WRONG
The casual drinker and aficionado alike commonly enjoy whisky or bourbon in an “old- fashioned” tumbler, a wide open-brimmed glass intended for iced cocktails. Many connoisseurs prefer a narrower aperture of the brim, opting for a tasting (or nosing) glass—a stemmed tulip-shaped snifter that concentrates the aromas and allow for inspection of the spirit’s color without marking the glass’ bowl with fingerprints.
Nosing glasses often concentrate the shape of the vapor in such a way that they tightly focus it, causing the ethanol to punch into the eyes and nose. A significant downside to using a nosing glass is that it changes the drinking experience to an introspective process, whereby the head is tilted up and back, cutting the drinker off from his surroundings.
A tumbler, on the other hand, allows one to sip while maintaining eye contact; a cool social glass. The social advantage of this is obvious, however the wide opening of the glass diffuses the aromatics of the spirit too widely, fading and flattening out the unique aromas of the spirit away from the nose—the drinker’s first and primary sensory point.
We took these two preferences to heart and through an extensive process of analyzing fluid dynamics and flavor transfer, iterative design, and expert feedback, created an entirely new whisky glass.
THE NORLAN WHISKY GLASS: FORM AND CONSTRUCTION
The Norlan glass is a transparent double walled vessel, formed with glass blowing technique into two separate two-part molds: one for the inner wall, and one for the outer wall. When the inner and outer glass walls are prepared, the rims are reheated and the inner glass is inserted, at which time the rims are sealed. This creates a hollow body glass with dramatically different inside shape to outside shape.
A unique effect of the double-walled construction is the intensity of color added to spirits in the bowl, which is further carried up into the rim of the glass.
- Concave lip: formed to fit the lower lip of the mouth elegantly
- Faceted base: allows one to hold the glass without getting fingerprints on the bowl
- Dimensions: 9.5cm tall, 6.3cm diameter outer rim, 3.8cm square base
- Weight: 125 grams
- Material: Hand-blown borosilicate glass
HOW DID WE GET HERE?
The Norlan Whisky Glass began over 1 1/2 years ago. We started first with the form, asking ourselves, how do we take the scent delivery of a nosing glass and combine it with a modernized tumbler shape? After careful study and experimentation, we set about improving the aeration properties by applying protrusions in the base of the glass. Over 90 design iterations and three dozen prototypes later, we arrived at the perfect whisky glass.
NORLAN WHISKY GLASS REWARD TIERS
THE KIST BOXED SET REWARD TIER
The Kist Edition is a special limited edition case of eight Norlan Whisky Glasses, designed exclusively for our Kickstarter campaign and developed with luxury casegoods manufacturer Method Studio in Scotland. The Kist is meticulously handcrafted and features a series of faceted edges and details which relate to those found on our glass. Inside, a dusty white, custom laser-cut leather container serves to hold the eight glasses like a diamond holding sunlight.
- 324mm wide x 324mm long x 136mm high
- Hand sculpted, faceted solid oak with magnetic closures
- Moisture resistant MDF "shelf" with laser cut crust leather lining
- Stained with black spirit stain and hand rubbed black patinating wax finish
POLISHING CLOTH NOW INCLUDED
As a thank you for the overwhelming support we've received and in light of the amazing success of this campaign, we will now include a black micro-fibre polishing cloth with every packaged set of Norlan whisky glasses. (That's one for a set of two, two for a set of four, and so on).
$375,000 STRETCH GOAL REACHED
Norlan was founded on creating the best experience for whisky drinkers, and improving the one you already think is pretty perfect. As such, the Norlan glass is just the beginning of our vision. Having reached our stretch goal, we will now also produce the first digital edition of our publication exploring the modern lifestyle of whisky drinking and production through our aesthetically and narratively oriented eyes. The publication will include features and interviews with a range of talented individuals all unified by their love of whisky. (The cover below is a mock-up including examples of the ridiculously cool people we plan to feature.)
All backers will automatically receive the digital publication in May of next year, along with an option to purchase a printed version of the magazine on-demand at a discounted rate.
A few words on the above timeline.
When we launched our campaign, we were being staunch realists who estimated a certain amount of units. However we clearly should have been as optimistic as our new loving audience. Based on our initial timeline and estimated number of units, we originally had delivery of the rewards slated for April 2016.
Due to the phenomenal increase in the volume of glasses that now need to be made and based on input from our production partners, we thought it prudent to add a buffer of one to two months to the production schedule to account for the unknown. We’re doing this because we would prefer to ship you the perfect whisky glass slightly later than, well, anything that is not a perfect whisky glass.
We will continue to try and make the delivery happen as early as possible. As we cannot change the delivery date in our reward tiers, we will continue to update this timeline here with the latest information, along with informing our backers in campaign updates.
THE NORLAN TEAM
Norlan was developed with the help of over 90 people who contributed their wisdom, industry knowledge, professional services, moral support, and enthusiasm to our project. Our core team consists of three driven individuals with a combined experience of over 3 decades in the design and retail industries.
Risks and challenges
The Norlan Whisky Glass has been under development since March of 2014. We have already invested thousands of hours and personal savings into research, design, development, sampling, and testing to achieve the perfect whisky glass. We completely believe in this product and the experience it will bring you.
Raising a minimum of $75k on Kickstarter will now allow us to meet minimum production and packaging runs, establish early distribution, begin the crucial marketing phase, and further invest in IP protection.
We have partnered with a globally vetted manufacturer to ensure the highest quality control and production fulfillment. While we are confident that we will deliver between April and June of 2016, no new product or invention comes without some unexpected challenges. Those may include potential delays in the fulfillment process, which might ultimately setback our timeline.
We promise to be fully transparent throughout the entire process and are committed to providing regular, detailed updates to our Kickstarter supporters.
Thank you for supporting Norlan and for being a part of bringing this product to life.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Norlan is Scottish for ‘Northern’ or the ‘Northern part of Scotland.’ We went there a few times, and each visit we leave a little piece of our hearts.
Our headquarters are in New York, NY, but Norlan draws inspiration from Scottish roots.
We pack in the traditional method by placing the tissue-wrapped glasses in the boxes by hand.
The rewards for 2, 4, 6, and 8 glasses are all packed in sets of 2 [the only even prime number, glorious in it’s complex simplicity]. Each pack now comes with a microfibre polishing cloth, because shiny is awesome.
And as such, if you are the generous type, planning on getting a couple Norlan glasses for yourself and gifting a pair to a lucky friend, pledge for four (which, while not prime, is the smallest composite number, simple in it’s glorious geometry).
We are working with a trusted warehouse and distribution partner with locations in the US and Europe that will ensure we can deliver your glasses to you safe and sound.
Shipments for locations within the EU and UK will be fulfilled from our warehouse and distribution partner located in Europe. Shipments for locations within the US, Canada and the rest of the world will be fulfilled from our US warehouse and distribution partner.
Working with a partner in US and the EU allows us to ship your rewards to you at preferential
pricing and is determined by the weight and dimensions of final packaging as well as the final
The Kist Boxed set is handcrafted from solid oak wood and the weight of this piece is factored
into the calculation of the shipping cost. It is heavy, like an early morning Scottish fog over Blackness the Firth of Forth where it was made. Mysterious.
We will ship all glass set rewards complete. Due to the handmade nature of the Kist Boxed set
and the additional time to create this piece, we can offer to ship the glasses for this reward tier
separate from the box shipment if you would like to receive and enjoy the glasses earlier.
Production is managed by a globally recognized glass specialist with a partner factory in Beijing.
The Norlan glass is a hand-blown product. Due to the unique production methods, each glass will vary ever so slightly. This artisanal techniques, and the time-old combination of breath, fire and sand, create subtle variances, which highlight the craft of production. It’s beautiful.
The glass should be cleaned and handled in the same manner you would any of your other
specialty glassware. Like any other glass, you just want to be mindful to not shock the glass with exposure to one extreme temperature and then the other… or the full expression of gravity (or the awesome power of fully operational gravitational pull).
We are in the process of testing the glass to meet international standards.
No, Borosilicate glass is used in science labs as a standard. Unless you are allergic to sand? It’s totally the best thing to use ever for glassware.
This is the best method for making a glass with a different internal and external shape. If it was solid it would weigh as much as your grandparents' ashtrays from the 60’s.
It cannot. It is sealed by the power of vacuum. Like outer space.
The Norlan glass was developed specifically with whisky in mind, but certainly you can use your glass for any other spirits you desire. We are agnostic about it.
Correct. Yes it will. Any drink with a high percentage of alcohol will be improved by this glass. Just like conversations with us.
You can do whatever you like with the glass once you get it, including using Ice.
Sure, why not.
A colored version of the glass is undergoing consideration as part of the collection of the Norlan
brand. If you have any suggestions, write them down, put them in an envelope, and hide it in a sock drawer or something—our designer is super grumpy and doesn’t like being told what to do. He like totally has his own thing going on. But we appreciate the thought, even if he doesn’t.
Just the one size and shape. We perfected it remember? If we offered options, that would be contradictory to the heartfelt honesty of our detailed and considered campaign message, right?
We don’t differentiate between women, men, transgender, gender-neutral, transhuman and maybe even post-humans. This glass can be enjoyed by anyone with a face.
Not at the moment, but in the future there will be. Your contributions will help us get the glass into your favorite whisky bars. And if you tell your favorite whisky serving establishment
that you won’t drink whisky out of anything but a Norlan glass, we may see this happen sooner
You can google that one.
Super, please send your inquiry to: email@example.com
While we cannot offer individual personalization during the campaign, we plan for corporate and bulk customization options. Please feel free to send us an inquiry at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The best place to check is our company website (www.norlanglass.com). We’ll be sure to keep
this updated with a list of our partners that will be offering the glass.
While we would love to share the details of our design workshop, we are bound by confidentiality agreements and cannot disclose the names of those involved at this time. Oooo secrets.
The Norlan Whisky Glass is the first in what we plan to be a broad range of products designed and developed for modernizing the whisky drinking experience. Because, The Future.
Why would you want that? It would be a box with 8 awesomely cut holes in it. What are you going to put in there… other glasses?
The boing boom chack maestro of Iceland, Helgi Svavar Helgason.
Well honestly no man is an Island, and we had to work over many of them. Raphael Recht, lugged his gear between Australia, Iceland and Scotland to document the moments of creation as they happened. Marino Thorlacius caressed the beautiful product shots into being.
And what about the video editing? I totally have been looking for a badass knife-monkey to slice and dice footage for me.
We don’t leave home without Steffania Thors. The cut master.
No way. Almost 100 people have contributed in some way, from valuable advice and feedback all the way through to creative elements such as graphics, filming and photography, and emotional support. Our partners and families get the biggest heartfelt thanks for putting up with our obsession, and being there for us.
Isn’t it a little extreme to spend so long making a glass just because you really really like whisky?
Yes. Obviously. But that is how we roll. Whisky takes an age to make and perfect, and there’s no reason why a glass shouldn’t either. *Drops the mike*
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