Ballantine’s Space Glass: drink whisky in space!
Thinking of their future customers, Ballantine’s has created a whisky glass that works in zero gravity. The idea is somewhat based on the “Stay True” concept of the brand where even in the distant future, consumers would remain loyal to the brand.
To put the project into practice, the brand commissioned a group of “space entrepreneuers” from the Open Space design agency, headed by scientist James Parr. Ballantine’s Space Glass forsees a new era of space tourism, and the prototype solves the challenge of drinking liquid in zero-G environments. The cup has been rigorously tested in micro gravity at the ZARM Drop Tower, Bremen, Germany, to prove its functionality in conditions similar to outerspace.
“Our brief was to develop a whisky glass that worked under the conditions of microgravity, the scientific term for zero gravity,” writes Parr on Medium. “It was important that we focused on creating a ritual around how you drink from the Ballantine’s Space Glass to ensure a familiarity of what we are used to here on earth — the end result is one with several elements to that ritual, from the liquid entering the glass through to sipping from it.”
The human senses of smell and taste aren’t exactly the same in space so it was necessary to create a stronger whiskey, while maintaining Ballantine’s quality and flavor. Astronauts have stated many times before how they miss flavors from earth while in space, so improving the whisky for this experience was a way to ensure that they could have a more similar experience.
To “pour” the whiskey in a zero-G environment, a serving mechanism was developed that inserts a nozzle at the base of the Space Glass. Held together by a strong magnetic conection, the glass base releases a rapid downward pressure, allowing the slow release of whiskey through a valve.
The golden mouth clip is ergonomically shaped to give the user a similar experience to drinking in a normal glass, while a hidden opening releases the aroma. The cup base hides a magnet that can be used to stick the glass on magnetic surfaces so it doesn’t go floating all over the place.