A quality glass pitcher is perhaps one of the most underrated serveware investments anyone can make, really. It has its go-to uses—batching and serving large-format drinks for a group of guests, or simply keeping your invitees hydrated, for example—but there’s something to be said for a great pitcher’s longer list of less obvious applications.
The act of pouring a glass of water for oneself from an intentional and aesthetically-pleasing vessel while, say, working from home or relaxing with a book might seem like a simple act, but it’s one that can make all the difference in mindset (while also eliminating the need to interrupt your flow by getting up for a refill). Depending on your creativity, there’s plenty of potential to incorporate your glass pitcher into your décor when not in use (cue Pinterest rabbit hole). In the end, we found the Marquis by Waterford Markham Pitcher to be the most satisfying to pour with its timeless style. From thoughtfully designed to highly functional, here are our top picks for the best glass pitchers to get right now.
Best Overall: Marquis by Waterford Markham Pitcher
There’s something about a stately, heavyweight glass piece with classic beveling. It’s a reliably timeless look, and as you can probably envision with this stunning Marquis by Waterford pitcher, these relatively affordable works of art are perpetually suited for double-duty as tablescape centerpieces when in use and stately display items otherwise.
Whether you’re pouring cucumber and mint-infused water for guests or giving a fresh bouquet of flowers a curated home, the Markham pitcher simply elevates the experience. This crystalline (or lead-free crystal) pitcher stands just over nine inches tall and holds approximately 52 ounces of liquid and is hand-wash only.
Best Budget: IKEA 365+ Sustainable Glass Pitcher with Cork Lid
While perhaps best known for its affordable bed frames, questionable furniture assembly instructions, and surprisingly good meatballs, IKEA is also home to some seriously smart and inexpensive glass pitchers.
The 365+ model, for example, is minimalist in design, sustainable in construction, and comes in at under $10. The glass itself is heat-resistant, meaning you can whip up a batch of hot tea in it without worry, and is dishwasher-safe, sparing you the need to clean it by hand after each use. The cork lid, of course, should be rinsed by hand and left to air-dry. This eight-inch-tall pitcher holds 51 fluid ounces and matches a variety of IKEA’s glassware styles if you’re in the market for a complete set.
Best Splurge: Ichendorf Milano Hand-Blown Layered Glass Caipirinha Jug
Calling all with an eye for design and a pop of color: this stunning Ichendorf Milano color-blocked glass pitcher might just become your new obsession. Crafted by hand from borosilicate and dishwasher-safe glass, the layered Caipirinha Jug comes in several different colorways and is made in Italy.
The dimensions vary by style and each one is entirely unique given its construction; this particular design (Amber Smoke and White Glass) stands approximately 10.5 inches tall and holds about 36 ounces of liquid. Ichendorf Milano also produces similarly color-blocked glassware to match this simple-yet-slightly-funky pitcher—whether you buy the pitcher on its own or make it a set, these pieces make for a great and effortless gift to yourself or anyone else.
Related: The Best Beverage Dispensers
Best Large: Libbey 82-ounce Drinking Jar Pitcher
Some occasions call for a larger-than-life pitcher, and Libbey’s 82-ounce clear Drinking Jar almost always does the trick. The slightly-vintage farmhouse design is uncomplicated and tends to mesh with any setting and surface, though this particular pitcher is intended for use with cold liquids only, which is something to consider (although serving 82 ounces of coffee, tea, or hot cocktails is not quite an everyday need for the home bartender or host). Note that the Libbey Drinking Jar Pitcher is hand-wash only and weighs about 2.7 pounds.
Best Airtight: Bormioli Rocco Hermetic Seal Recycled Glass Refrigerator Jug
If you haven’t heard of Luigi Bormioli or its related brands, you’re almost certainly missing out on some of the best value in glassware on the market. From stunning cocktail glasses to high-quality decanters, the Bormioli name is known for its crystal-clear and ultra-durable glass pieces, most of which are incredibly affordable given the company’s decades of expertise and craftsmanship at the intersection of form and function.
The Bormioli Rocco Hermetic Seal Glass Refrigerator Jug is a perfect example, combining clean lines, sturdy and sustainable lead-free glass, and an airtight and leak-proof seal that’ll keep juice and other drinks fresh for days—the thick walls of the pitcher are designed to maintain cold temperatures for longer periods of time, making this vessel an ideal option for outdoor use on hot summer days. This pitcher can also be used to serve hot drinks; both the jug and the lid are dishwasher safe.
Related: The Best Reusable Straws
Best Design: HAY Large Jug
There are few more fitting authorities on modern art than the country’s top modern art museums (particularly, their gift shops). Curated much like a museum collection, the gift shop offerings at both New York City’s Museum of Modern Art and San Francisco’s equivalent serve as a shoppable gift guide, bringing together a wide variety of items that are works of art in and of themselves, all at a variety of price points—take this eye-catching jug by Danish designer HAY, which brings together dishwasher-safe and heat-resistant borosilicate glass and graceful curves in a stunning shade of green. Like a few other pitchers on this list, the HAY Large Jug can be paired with matching glassware for a complete set.
Related: The Best Highball Glasses
Most Functional: Zwilling JA Henckels Sorrento Double-Wall 27 oz. Carafe
If you’re looking to keep hot and cold drinks at a steady temperature for as long as possible, a double-walled pitcher is the perfect solution. This smart approach to insulation is available from a number of different glassware brands, but German home goods brand Zwilling J.A. Henckels is responsible for this ultra-efficient and durable 27-ounce pitcher, which weighs in at exactly one pound and is dishwasher-safe. Pick up a few of the brand’s matching double-walled glasses to maximize the life of your drink on either end of the temperature spectrum.
Read Next: The Best Bar Cabinets
Best Small: Threshold Small Glass Bistro Carafe with Lid
Transport yourself to the quaint corner bistros of Paris with Target’s perfectly petite glass carafe, complete with lid and all.
Available in multiple sizes starting with this sturdy 17-ounce design, the Threshold collection’s lidded bistro carafes are dishwasher safe and are suited for both cold and hot liquids—think ice-cold sparkling water, an oversized serving of hot tea, or even a pour-over coffee for two. It seems almost too good to be true for the super-affordable price tag, so be sure to nab a few before Target catches on and ups the cost.
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Céline Bossart has been covering the wine and spirits scenes for over eight years and has been steadily building her glassware collection along the way. Currently, her favorite pitchers are the HAY Large Jug and anything by Bormioli, though she’s also a fan of a good double-walled pitcher and tumbler combo.