Though I'm a long time user (and admirer) of classic French bistro tumblers (inspired by Duralex, which you can read more about here, in a super-long story from the Independent, if you're so inclined), I had never considered the smaller, "rocks" glasses (high-ball-size) for my collection.
But now I have 'em and I have never been happier about a glassware purchase, ever. EVER! (Okay, that may be an exaggeration, but I'm really into these glasses.)
They are seriously cool cat. They are the cat's meow. They are the cat's pajamas. They are various other idioms and phrases that mean "cool" but have little-to-nothing to do with our friends of the feline variety.
They're just really solid glasses.
Here's a short lesson in shape:
Duralex bistro glasses are the most sought-after sort in the world of vintage collecting for this kind of glassware, and as such, there's no shortage of information about them online (see that Independent article, above). They have an elegant, almost fluted shape that appeals to many, but Duralex glasses, despite their authentic French pedigree, aren't my favourite. I actually prefer the chunky lines of those made by companies that deal in restaurant supply (such as Arcaroc and Libbey).
Here are a few glasses side-by-side, to show you how the shapes compare:
No matter what you call these glasses (faceted, paneled, bistro, etc.), and no matter who they're by, you'll find a variety available at several price points. I highly recommend them. They're family-friendly, practical, and yes, chic. They look great in modern kitchens, eclectic kitchens, cottagey kitchens, urban kitchens, etc. In fact, they go well in every kitchen I've ever seen. And they're well-suited to open-shelving. And you can stack 'em. And they're amazing. (Have I mentioned I like these glasses?)
Here are some bistro glasses featured in a kitchen in Style At Home magazine: