Interested in taking a mixology class? Attending a virtual cocktail making class can be the best way to learn how to whip up classic cocktails just like a pro. And as you probably know, a seasoned bartender has many skills up their sleeve. So what are the things you need to learn to become the professional bartender you’ve always wanted to be? That is what we talk about in this article. Continue reading to learn more.
How to Shake a Cocktail Properly
As you may have been taught from many cocktail making classes, the most important tip when it comes to shaking cocktails is to never be shy. Again, not every recipe demands shaking. However, shake it properly if it does. Shaking a cocktail introduces additional bubbles of oxygen into the mixture, which is what is responsible for that frosty appearance. This means that drinks containing dairy-based ingredients, eggs, or fruit juices are mixed by shaking. To shake it, take your favourite shaker, fill it in half with ice, add your ingredients and get started with shaking. As you shake it, strain it to get a perfectly blended cocktail.
Making a Stirred Cocktail
Stirring doesn’t require the force you used for shaking. Instead, it is a technique that is much more subtle. Stirring is typically needed when concocting an all-alcohol cocktail like Manhattans or Martinis. What is required is just the perfect dilution that smoothes things out and ensures that your cocktail blends perfectly with the base drink.
To stir a cocktail, take a mixing glass and fill it up with ice to the halfway line. Next, take a long bar spoon and stir fast enough to the point that you almost have a vortex in your cocktail centre. After that, stir for about 30 seconds, and let it sit for a few more seconds. After that, strain and pour.
Muddling Mint & Fruit for Cocktails
Some of the finest classic pours, for instance, a mojito, requires some muddling to make the ingredients genuinely sing. By muddling fruits or herbs with sugar, it will release essential juices and oils that enhance the flavour of your cocktail. While it sounds intimidating, the truth is that it isn’t difficult at all. You only need to be armed with a dependable muddler and some elbow grease and you are good to go.
Put the ingredients in the bottom end of a shaker tin or a glass jar, then, with the help of your muddler, press and then gently twist. In case the glass contains some fruits, you will see juices squirt out from the fruit. There isn’t any guarantee how long this takes, but when you get a whiff of a fruity or herby scent, you know you’ve got your baby.
Using a Cocktail Strainer
The vast majority of cocktail shakers contain built-in strainers, which makes it foolproof when it comes to pouring your drink. However, when you are pouring a drink that has been stirred, or when you use a basic shaker tin, you will need to have the proper tools. And when it comes to strainers, they are of two main types. The first one is a julep strainer and the other one is a hawthorn strainer. While you are free to use any of these, standard practices require using a hawthorn strainer when you are pouring from a glass. On the other hand, when pouring from glass, your best bet is to use a julep strainer. Both these strainers will keep nearly all ingredients and ice from the cocktail. However, if you really want to end up with a clean pour, it may be necessary to buy a fine mesh strainer as this guarantees that nothing will get into the glass apart from the drink.
How to Know Your Liquors
You should by now already know that each base liquor is responsible for a unique role in the cocktail. Perfect vodka does not have any flavour, and because of that, it can be blended with anything from orange juice to vermouth. Because gin is prepared from juniper, it should maintain its unique character when blended into a Tom Collins or a Martini. Rye and whiskey are famed for their smoky character and usually linger on the roof of the mouth of a drinker. They are perfect in hearty drinks such Old Fashioneds or Manhattans. For rum, it can either be clear or brown, and it tends to be sweeter compared to most liquors. It is the main ingredient in Daiquiris and Dark N Stormy. Succulents are the main ingredient in making mescal and tequila and usually blend perfectly with citrus drinks such as margaritas.
Master the Art of Free Pour
When apportioning the exact quantities of spirits into a mixing glass, professional bartenders use jigger as the measuring tool. When it comes to a free pour, formal measurements aren’t used. You only have to tilt the bottle and have the liquor poured into the glass. As a great bartender, you should be comfortable using any pouring technique.
In case your cocktail involves a carbonic ingredient, for instance, tonic water or soda, neither stirring nor shaking is the ideal technique of mixing. If that’s the case, you only need to have your ingredients layered into the glass, and then gently stir for the utmost 10 seconds.
Typically when a cocktail contains carbonation, it will not be judged by how subtle it is, so the most important thing to ensure is that the blend contains equal proportions of mixer and booze.
Learn More from Experts
Want to learn more about bartending? There is no better place to be than Bar Brothers and Events. Based in the UK, we have award-winning bartenders to teach you great acts of mixology. Whether you want to refine your palate, shake up the perfect pour, or simply explore the spirits world, you are covered. Just call us today and start your virtual cocktail making class. Four weeks is what you need to be transformed into a world-class bartender.
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