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Top Tips for Making Cocktails at Home

Urvashi Deshpande on June 19, 2020

The last time you visited a Bar and the bartender impressed you with some cool mixology skills. 

You wondered gosh that would be tough. Well, we don't recommend starting a flame torch in your home bar without professional training but there are a lot of cocktails that you can master easily at your own home bar.

A cocktail is a mixed drink that is traditionally defined as a combination of liquor(s), a sweetener, bitters, and water (diluted ice). Bar Enthusiasts and amateurs, here is a list of top tips for making cocktails at your home bar:

 

1. Arrangements

Unlike a regular neat whiskey or just a bottle of beer, cocktails do need a little prep work.

Making a few arrangements before your evening saves you a lot of running around looking for the right ingredients. Ingredients, mixers, right ice cubes, and balls, cocktail shakers, bar tools, fruit peels, etc.

For more preparedness, do look up the recipes of cocktails that you plan to make and stock up accordingly.

 

2. Sugar Syrup

One of the most common aspects of many cocktails is Sugar Syrup or Simple Syrup as it may be referred to by many.

Here is our tip to prepare this:

  1. Add 200gms of white sugar to 200ml of boiling water.
  2. Keep stirring till sugar dissolves completely and the liquid is clear.
  3. Allow it to cool and then refrigerate.

Sugar syrup can last for a month in your refrigerator.

 

3. Ice

Might surprise you, but ice is many times the most overlook ingredient in cocktail making.

In our experience, the best quality ice is made with silicone ice trays with lids. In recent years, there are various kinds of ice trays that make ice either in fun shapes or large ball or block shapes that condense slower than smaller cubes and cool your drink better without diluting it.

Make sure to wash your ice trays after each use to avoid unpleasant odors. 

 

4. Glassware

Cocktails making and cocktail evening is not just about the taste and recipe of cocktail; but also about the presentation and show. Each cocktail has a type of cocktail glass that accentuates the fragrance, color, and appeal of your cocktail.

Haphazard coffee mugs are not gonna cut it anymore on cocktail nights.

 

5. Start with the Classics

You can't go wrong with a classic cocktail.

Whether you're craving a tried-and-true Old Fashioned, a traditional whiskey-and-vermouth Manhattan, or James Bond’s famous Vesper, start with some of the most classic drinks.

Cocktails exist in family trees and once you have mastered the Classics, graduating to the complete array of recipes to become a professional will take you no time (maybe a few house parties for sure though :P)

 

6. Barware

Bar tools necessities:

Cocktail Shaker

A cocktail shaker is used to chill and mix drink ingredients. Shaking a cocktail is a great way to thoroughly integrate all of a drink’s ingredients in order to create one blend of flavor. The majority of cocktail recipes call for this tool.

Jigger

You've got to measure those drinks, no more free-flowing :)  

A jigger is a two-sided tool used for liquor measurement.

Muddler 

Many signature cocktails require the mashing of fresh ingredients. A muddler is a classic and simple tool that’s essential behind any bar

Wine Key

The wine key is essentially three tools in one—a knife, a corkscrew, and a bottle opener.

 

Bar Spoon 

Also called a stirring spoon, this specialized spoon is designed to stir cocktails and is usually lengthier than your regular tablespoon to offer ease of stirring in the cocktail shaker.

Strainer

One of the most useful tools that you will need to strain ice while pouring the drink from your cocktail shaker into your glassware.

 

7. Safety and Responsibility

Alcohol is not a thing to be taken lightly. As much fun as we have with it, there is a certain level of responsibility that comes along with making drinks.

 

Cheers!

 

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