Halfway There: The Schnitt

Have you ever wanted to sample a new beer but didn't want to commit to a 16-ounce pour? Then the schnitt, a half-pour of beer, could be your new best friend. Learn all about the German concept and its potential to bridge the gap between tiny samplers and the shaker pint in this article. Discover how being sensible never has to mean sacrificing the enjoyment of a great beer.

The Wholly Sensible Concept of Half Pours

The concept of the half pour is a wonderfully sensible one that originated in Germany, and is slowly finding its way into beer bars in the United States. In Germany it is known as the "schnitt," and is quickly becoming an answer to many American's desire for smaller sample sizes, without reducing their beer drinking experience to a fast, mass-marketed place.

The concept of the half pour is simple — offer a smaller, “half” pour size that bridges the gap between small samplers and a massive 16-ounce shaker pint. The size of the glass is usually 8 ounces or 4 ounces, depending on the bar or brewery, and that allows customers to try a greater number of beers without ever risking the price of purchasing a full pint.

Why Half Pours Make Sense

There are many additional reasons why it makes sense for bars and breweries to offer half pours. Some of these reasons include:

  1. A half pour glass can increase revenue by allowing customers to sample more beers.
  2. They offer a better way to taste beer and protect the integrity of the beer, compared to simply taking a sip from someone else's glass.
  3. They can help breweries to make the most of their limited tap space by allowing customers to sample more beers.
  4. They can provide customers with a sense of adventure and discovery that comes with trying a new beer; they reduce the anxiety that some people experience when they try a new beer, as they're only investing a fraction of the cost of a pint.
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What Half Pours Are Not

Half pours are not the same as a single pour or a “taster”. A single pour is a standard, full-glass of beer, and a taster is a much smaller, four-ounce pour. The half pour is somewhere between these two, and is meant to bridge the gap between the two. In this way, customers can enjoy a fully flavored sample of beer without committing the cost of a full pint.

An Affordable Way to Try New Beers

Half pours are an affordable way for people to sample a wide variety of beers without having to invest the money in a full pint. For instance, a customer who wants to taste several beers at a bar can have 2-3 half pours for the price of one full pint. This allows people to sample a much broader range of beers than would otherwise be possible.

Also, some bars allow customers to order a flight of beers — typically four beers of their choice — and then split that flight among several people. In this way, customers can sample a wide variety of beers without having to purchase multiple pints.

Saving Coffee and Money

At coffeehouses and cafes, for instance, offering half pours of coffee allows customers to sample multiple types of roasts and blends without having to commit to several full-size servings. This is beneficial for those who want to try different types of coffee without investing in a full pot.

Also, if you work in an office environment that has a coffee machine, offering half pours allows employees to get the caffeine they need without having to invest in a full cup of coffee. This could potentially save a lot of money on coffee, as each employee is only investing a fraction of the cost of a full cup.

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The Benefits of Half Pours

Half pours offer many benefits, both to bars and customers alike. They offer customers a way to sample a greater variety of beers without having to invest the full cost of a pint. They also allow bars to make the most of their limited tap space, as they can offer more beers on a given list without having to increase the number of taps.

Half pours also protect the integrity of the beers, as customers can sample several beers without having to share a single glass. And finally, they offer a sense of adventure and discovery that comes with trying a new beer without having to invest too heavily in a pint.

Conclusion

The schnitt, or half-pour, is a wonderfully sensible concept that has been around for centuries. It is slowly beginning to be adopted by American bars, and provides customers with a way to sample a greater variety of beers without having to purchase

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