Perhaps this should have been the first in our Cocktail Class series, oops. If you’re following this series, perhaps you are unfamiliar with some of equipment used when making cocktails. This article will give you a base knowledge of all you need to make a majority of the cocktails that exist today, along with links to where you can buy all of the necessary equipment should you need to kit yourself out. For our next in the series we will be explaining simple terms and techniques before moving back onto the cocktails themselves in our fourth issue.
A list of some of the equipment you’ll need to have a fully functioning cocktail crafting kit at home:
- Shaker - There’s several different types of shaker and which one you’ll prefer is a matter of personal taste. A BOSTON shaker is a large metal tin and a glass used for mixing. With a BOSTON shaker you combine your ingredients in the glass, fill with ice and then place the metal tin over the rim of the glass and shake. DOUBLE TINS are similar to a BOSTON apart from the mixing glass isn’t a glass at all, both parts of the shaker are metal and this type is the preference of the author by a long way. There is lots of different types of shaker but these two are the most popular with cocktail bartenders and the easiest to get accustomed to. I can particularly recommend KORIKO as a brand of DOUBLE TIN shaker that are both high in quality and reasonable in price.
- Mixing Glass – This is for stirred cocktails. Cocktails are generally either shaken or stirred and both have different effects on the liquid. If you don’t want to buy a MIXING GLASS you can always use a pint glass that you have lying around the house. A proper cocktail MIXING GLASS however will be a large volume straight sided glass that you add liquid and ice to then stir down until the drink is chilled.
- Bar spoon – This is special spoon with a helical handle and a 5ml (approx.) spoon on the end. Normally on the opposing end from the spoon there will be either a flat disc or fork. The BAR SPOON allows the spoon to twist in your hand which is important when mixing drinks and the flat end is useful when churning a drink using crushed ice, or the fork for picking up garnishes without using your hands.
- Jigger – This is a small measuring tool which usually has two sides, one 50ml and one 25ml. Some also come with lines down the side of the two sides to account for smaller measures. You can always use a measuring jug if you have one around the house but they don’t always account for sufficiently small enough sizes.
- Strainer – This is a tool which fits over the top of your COCKTAIL SHAKER or MIXING GLASS which strains out the liquid but leaves the ice behind.
- Double strainer – This is used when cocktails have been shaken vigorously. As something is shaken the ice gets broken up into very small pieces, much too small for the STRAINER to remove. The DOUBLE STRAINER looks like a small sieve and is used in conjunction with the other STRAINER to catch ice flakes which would otherwise float on top of a drink.
All products pictured can be purchased from www.cocktailkingdom.co.uk