People have been making beer for thousands of years -- at least as far back as the great civilisations of Egypt and Mesopotamia. But the idea of putting beer into bottles and cans is a pretty recent one. While people have been making quality beer for millennia, it's only in the last few centuries that our glassmaking skills have gotten good enough that we could make bottles that won't crack under the pressure of fizzy beer. Home brewers will know how easily even modern, factory-made bottles can explode if you don't take care!

Originally, bottled beer came in an extremely wide variety of bottle shapes, depending on which glassblower the brewer was sourcing his bottles from. This lead to difficulties in sales and distribution, as the size and shape of a box of beer bottles could vary a lot.


In the 1930s, attempts began to standardise bottle sizes, and the stubbie we all know and love today was born. Developed in the USA and originally called a 'steinie' these bottles were often a little smaller than the modern stubby. But they had the same useful design features -- a broad base and a short height meant that they had a wide base and a low centre of gravity to limit accidents and breakage.

Stubbies are seldom used in the USA any more but remain popular in Australia and Canada. In both countries, they have been joined by other styles of bottles with different shapes -- taking us basically back to square one!

Bottles and Cans

Fortunately, the stubbie holder is made out of a flexible material. This means when it comes to works just as well on the thinner, taller 375ml bottles available. And, more or less as an accident, the Australian standard size of beverage can has a very similar profile at the base. This means you can use your stubby holder with them too -- whether to keep them cold in the summer or to protect your hand from their cold surface in the winter.