Stretch Glass Compotes:

Terms & Definitions


People often ask, "what IS a compote?"!! (By the way, compOTE and compORT, are the same thing, just different spellings!) Technically, a compote is a bowl with a base and stem that is designed to serve a compote! CLEAR?

In the Victorian Era and well into the 20th Century, fruit mixtures cooked in syrup were a favored dessert. This mix was also called a compote and the fancy high-stemmed serving bowls soon were given the same name.

Therefore, a true compote (or comport) should be large enough to hold several servings of a dessert and it should have a long stem. Unfortunately, there are many glass pieces that have the same shape of a compote - sherbets, stemmed glasses, some mayonnaise servers, and even the tiny salts and nut cups. Therefore, if you have a piece that looks like a compote, but it is probably not large enough to hold several servings of a dessert, the piece is likely something else!

Most compotes have flared bowls to make serving from them easy. A cupped rim would be difficult to deal with!

Stretch glass compotes appear to be pieces mainly handled in a snap (see plates for definitions), so if you find a compote with a ground foot or a pontil, it's likely to be a damaged piece or a piece of art glass.

This U.S. Glass 310 compote in blue is a classic in proportions and shaping.

A US Glass 314 compote in crystal has a smaller stem and may be considered a footed bowl. However, you could certainly serve more dessert from this piece!

This Fenton twin-dolphin compote in aquamarine would certainly make an elegant presentation for dessert, but we suspect that they were more commonly used as decoration pieces!

These Imperial sherbets in light and dark Ice Blue (=smoke) have the shape of compotes but are not large enough to be served from. (The images on this page are all of the same relative size.)

This is a US Glass 314 mayonnaise in purple. While it looks like a compote, it is a bit smaller than desired. Besides, we know it is a mayo because of catalog pages!

This Lancaster candy jar in Ruby Lustre (red to cream enamel on crystal stretch) often has the lid missing and is then "declared" to be a compote! Don't be fooled!

This Northwood 705 compote in russet has the classic form of a compote and is listed in their catalog pages.