'cocktail technique' on Serious Eats

Cocktail 101: Shakers and Spoons

Today begins a series on barware basics. I'll tell you what pieces I think are essential for the home bartender, but I'll also look at tools that are nice to have but perhaps not necessary. To start, let's consider shakers and spoons, two of the most important tools used to make cocktails. More

Cocktail 101: How to Rinse a Glass

The purpose of the rinse is to impart the taste of a strongly flavored ingredient to a cocktail, without that ingredient overpowering the rest of the drink. The Sazerac is probably the best-known cocktail to feature a rinse, with its traditional wash of absinthe (or pastis, in the decades before absinthe's return to the United States). More

Cocktail 101: All About Bitters, Part 1

Bitters originally were formulated by physicians (or quacks posing as such) in the 1700s and sold as medicinal tonics. The idea was to take herbs and spices, preserve them in alcohol, and market them as a remedy for circulation or digestion disorders. By 1806, the word cocktail was already in use to describe a mix of spirits, water, sugar, and bitters. More

Cocktail 101: All About Ice

Ice plays a crucial role in cocktail making. Not only does it chill a drink, but it also releases water into the cocktail, binding the ingredients, smoothing out the flavor, and taking the edge off the base spirit. Home bartenders have a bit of an advantage over many professionals: freezer ice. More

Cocktail 101: Glassware Basics

Have you ever looked at the array of glassware available at, say, your local Crate & Barrel? The variety can seem overwhelming, even to a veteran boozer like me. No need to stress out, though. Here's our guide to the basic types of glasses that you actually need for your home bar. More

Cocktail 101: How to Flame an Orange Twist

The flamed orange twist ranks among the most spectacular techniques in a bartender's bag of tricks. At a crowded bar, a quick burst of flame always turns heads and sparks conversation, but it's no less an exhibition at home, when you're serving a cocktail to a guest. Today, I conclude my a-peel-ing miniseries on citrus-twist garnishes by showing you how. More

Cocktail 101: How To Strain a Cocktail

To strain a cocktail, you'll need a strainer, naturally, and a couple of types are available. Traditionally, the julep strainer is used when straining a cocktail from a mixing glass, and the Hawthorne when straining from a mixing tin. The reason is simple: The julep strainer fits a mixing glass better than a Hawthorne does, and the Hawthorne's a better fit than a julep when using a tin. More

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