It's easy to spend a fortune on equipment for the home bar, shelling out for the shiniest accessories and vintage glassware. But we believe that an exceptionally made cocktail is in essence about mixing and balancing it to perfection. And, with some care, you can do that at home with a simple range of bar tools.
Possibly the most important tool on your bar tending belt, a jigger allows you to measure your drink ingredients. The art of cocktail making lies in its balance: no one ‘throws together’ a Negroni or a Martini. In fact, the only throwing involved in drink making should be the gentle throw back of your head as you take a moment to enjoy that perfect first sip. A 15/45 mL jigger will help you hit that perfect note.
Which shaker will take pride of place on your bar? There are three styles to choose from, and you’ll find most people have a preference.
The commonly used Boston shaker is a two piece tap-together - one part glass, one part metal. Or similar is a pair of Toby Tins, both in metal (a favourite of bartenders). A Cobbler style shaker is a tapered vessel with an internal strainer and removal top cap. The Parisian shaker consists of a metal or copper base and top.
The mixing glass
A mixing glass is a must for many of our personal favourites - Negronis and Martinis to name a couple. This handy addition to your home bar is used for drinks that need to be chilled by stirring with ice, and even benefit from a little dilution to really release the flavours and aromas.
The Japanese crystal mixing glass is 710ml - the perfect size to mix two drinks and carefully crafted with a weighted base and pouring lip.
The Bar Spoon
And stirring brings us to bar spoons. A drink recipe that uses clear ingredients should have a nice clear finish.
A good, classic bar spoon has a twisted neck that lets the bartender twist while stirring, creating minimal disturbance in the drink. The spoon itself measures a teaspoon, great for measuring small precise amounts, like Maraschino Liqueur in a Martinez.
After stirring or shaking your cocktail with ice, you’ll need to strain it.
Grab a julep or hawthorne-style strainer that fits your chosen shaker nicely, and strain away to avoid any clumps of ice or pulp in your finished product.
Thanks to Ebony Schmidt, our resident 'home bar expert', for these words.