Tips for making the perfect cocktail
Here are some simple cocktail tips for every occasion.
Chill it: before you do anything else, chill glassware by placing in the freezer or filling with ice. It's always best to make a cocktail in a very cold glass as it will increase the longevity of a drink.
Ice: one of the most important ingredients. Keep ice as cold as possible – don't leave it out of the freezer for long. Always use as much as possible: when a recipe instruction is to fill a glass or shaker with ice, do so with generosity – to the top or slightly over the rim.
Glassware: most recipes will indicate a glass preference to suit the style of drink – long drinks in tall glasses such as highballs, martinis in martini glasses etc. Presentation is an important part of the pleasure of a cocktail. However, fun can also be had in selecting a glass that is slightly unexpected or has a unique shape. There are many interesting vintage store finds or discoveries to be made in the far reaches of the family drinks cabinet. Have fun with your selection – an eclectic mix can be interesting if you lack a full set.
Shaker: also known as a Boston Shaker, it consists of two tumblers – one is strong glass and the other stainless steel. By placing the metal tumbler over the glass tumbler a seal is formed to make a container for shaking ingredients. if you don't own a Boston Shaker improvise with a jam jar with a lid that seals. When making a cocktail, shake as hard as you can for at least 10 seconds to ensure a good mix of ingredients.
Strainer: cocktails containing muddled ingredients or crushed ice should be strained when poured into a glass.