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What Are The Essential Bar Tools?
Cocktail Shaker: Many of the world’s most popular cocktail recipes all for the drink to be shaken before it’s enjoyed. If any one of those recipes are on the menu, you’re going to need a shaker. Not only does shaking the cocktail ensure all the ingredients are thoroughly combined, if shaken with ice, shaking dilutes the cocktail properly.
Mixing Glass: For every cocktail that calls for a good, hard shake, there’s one that calls for gentle stirring. The general rule of thumb is if the cocktail recipe only has spirits in it, it should be stirred. Having a mixing glass makes it easy to stir up drinks, whether it’s a cocktail for one or a big batch drink.
Jigger: The measuring cup of the cocktail world. Cocktails are about balance, and making the perfect cocktail is about having the proper proportions. Most popular jiggers, like the ones that come in our bar tool sets, have a one-ounce and two-ounce side to make perfect pours from here on out.
Hawthorne Strainer: Depending on the type of cocktail shaker you have, a Hawthorne Strainer may not be necessary. Placed over the mouth of your cocktail shaker or mixing glass, a strainer keeps ice and other unwanted ingredients from ending up in your finished cocktail.
Bar Spoon: Cocktails aren’t going to mix themselves, so a bar spoon is an indispensable bar tool. A good bar spoon has some weight to it without being bulky. Best case scenario, your bar spoon will have additional features. A deep bowl makes it easy to measure out a level teaspoon. A flat end could serve as a muddler, too.
Muddler: Whether you’re stirring up and Old Fashioned or shaking up something fruity, chances are you’ll need to crush some ingredients. A muddler makes that both easy and efficient.
Ice Ball Mold: When it comes to drinking liquor on the rocks, you don’t want your drink getting too watery. Because of its larger surface area, a giant ice ball will melt slowly, adding just a little bit of water to your drink as you drink.
Decanter: Small batch liquor is an art all itself, and should be treated as such. Why hide that beautiful liquor behind dark glass and a label. Having a decanter for spirits on your bar cart allows you to put those beautiful drinks on full display. Alongside stunning decoration, a quality liquor decanter provides an airtight seal that prevents oxidation, ensuring your favorite liquor lasts as long as possible. And looks great doing it.
How To Set Up The Perfect Bar Cart:
You’ve stocked your home bar with uncommon craft spirits from independent distilleries around the globe. What now? It’s time to set up the perfect bar cart. Because without essential bar tools, those cocktails you're ready to whip up won’t turn out as well as you hope.
Setting up the perfect bar cart is about knowing what you want to drink. Old Fashioned drinkers aren’t going to need the same bar tools as people who prefer a Margarita.
An Old Fashioned doesn’t call for any shaking, so fans of the cocktail don’t necessarily need a cocktail shaker on their bar cart. But they do need a nifty set of tumblers, a bar spoon, and an ice ball tray to perfect their cocktail recipe.
On the other hand, a Margarita definitely requires a good shake, so finding the type of cocktail shaker that best suits your needs will be crucial.
Different Types of Cocktail Shakers:
There are a number of different types and styles of cocktail shakers out there, but there are two styles that are far and away the most popular for at-home mixologists and professional bartenders alike.
The two most common types of cocktail shakers:
- Cobbler Shaker
- Boston Shaker
Cobbler Shaker: This type of cocktail shaker is likely what comes to mind when you picture a friend shaking up your favorite drink. Convenience is the name of the game with a cobbler shaker. Each cobbler shaker is made from three separate pieces: a metal tin cup, built-in strainer, and a cap.
Generally, the cap holds roughly an ounce and could be used in place of a jigger. With the built-in strainer, you can build your cocktails in the cup, give them a good shake, pour and enjoy without having to dirty any other instruments.
Check out our cobbler shaker options in the Fortify Stainless Steel Barware Set – it comes in three colors! – or, if you’re only in the market for a shaker, try out the Retro 24 Ounce Cocktail Shaker.
Boston Shaker: The Boston shaker is typically the type of shaker a professional bartender would choose. Each shaker is made up of two different parts: a glass mixing cup and a metal tin cup.
When using a Boston shaker, first you build the cocktail in the mixing glass then seal it with the metal tin before shaking up excellence. Unlike the cobbler shaker, the Boston shaker doesn’t come with a built-in strainer, so you’re going to need a Hawthorne strainer – like this one – to make sure none of the unwanted ingredients fall into your glass. Luckily for you, everything you need, including the Boston shaker, comes in the 7 Piece Barware Set.
Want to know more about essential bar tools? Check out our blog.