Love making cocktails at your house parties? Then here’s a handy list of tips and tricks that will keep you ever ready to make the most amazing and delicious drinks at your next party!
Add magic to your cocktails with the right preparation, ingredients and knowledge to leave your guests impressed, and asking for more. You don’t need to be an expert mixologist or bartender to make delicious drinks to meet different tastes and preferences. All you need is some knowledge of the basics, and a willingness to experiment and learn to deliver serve an incredible drinking experience!
Here is a curated list of tips and tricks from the experts, that will help you put on a great show with your cocktails!
Tip #1: Get all the gear you need!
When you’re practising the art of mixology with cocktails, it’s advisable to have all the tools you may need. It creates the right mood and atmosphere for you, and makes the process easier too. You certainly don’t need all the fancy tools, just a few essentials and useful ones are a good investment to start on this journey. Here are a few basic ones:
A bar spoon: To stir cocktails. Different cocktails involve different mixing techniques. Some are shaken, some are stirred and some are layered. Cocktail recipes with whiskey and cocktail recipes with gin most often require some stirring. So when you need to give it a gentle mix, keep a bar spoon handy.
A Shaker: Likewise, a shaker is a must for mixing cocktail ingredients.
A jigger: To measure liquids accurately when building cocktails. So instead of directly pouring spirits/flavours, a jigger allows you to measure and add them to cocktails. Make perfectly balanced cocktails with the help of a two-way jigger.
Squeezers: For citrusy squeezes like lemon and oranges. Your thumb and fingers will truly thank you!
At some point in your experiments with cocktails, you may want to build a bar for yourself. Big or small, your bar should include all the spirit essentials, cocktail mixers, tools and a few different kinds of glasses. Here’s some inspiration✨ –
You can get almost everything from a supermarket or liquor store to build your home bar. If you’re looking for fun and versatile cocktail mixers, check out the SWA Party Pack – your stock of the choicest SWA flavours, plus you get a jigger and a shaker free!
Tip #2: Pay attention to your taste-makers
You need to have some go-to syrups handy to add flavours to your cocktails. But make sure they are natural and tasty before you start your experiments. A lot of syrups off the racks contain artificial flavours and sweeteners, harmful additives and preservatives.
The quality and taste of your cocktail is directly related to these flavour enhancers, therefore be mindful of your choice! Natural alternatives like SWA artisanal syrups that are made with local and seasonal fruits and herbs, and totally free from additives and preservatives, are consistent and worry-free choices. Enjoy an amazing range of delectable flavours that are perfect to add a desi touch to the drinks and appeal to the Indian taste buds. Or go with international favourites like Mojitos, with the added freshness of natural syrups.
With SWA syrups, you can try out a lovely range of cocktail recipes such as guava chilli cocktail, Pineapple-chilli Margarita Mocktail, Swa Jamun Kala Khatta & Tonic Cocktail Recipe, and much more. Check out all the flavours here.
Tip #3: Ice it, baby!
Nothing like loads of clear sparkling ice cubes to make your drinks cold and savoury! Clear ice is a must to make your drinks look as fantastic as they taste.
But do you know how to make it? The trick to getting clear ice is freezing it very, very slowly. The sooner ice freezes, the cloudier it’s going to be. Think of snow that freezes as soon as it falls. But freezing ice slowly with a regular refrigerator might be tricky, so here’s a little hack to those crystal-clear sparkling ice cubes – boil your water and then freeze it. This is said to remove impurities in water and make it clearer.
Make sure you have your stock of ice cubes always handy, and try to have larger ice cubes as they don’t melt away immediately and keep the drink cold for longer. You can also include ice cubes in different shapes or use crushed ice.
Tip #4: Get your Garnish game up
Don’t underestimate the power of garnishes, they can make or break your drink!
Adding a garnish can add so much to your drink – flavour, fun, aroma, beauty and the overall aesthetic. The absence of it can likewise take a lot away from it too – the visual appeal for instance which plays a huge role in the appreciation of a drink. A garnish can make your drink look fantastic or just mediocre or unfinished. What would you want your guests to experience?
Although some drinks may be served well without garnishes, most cocktails can be easily paired up with a garnish that compliments the taste.
Your garnish can be small or extravagant, take, for instance, if you’re making a guava chilli cocktail or trying out your mojito mocktail recipe, something as simple as a chilli and salt rim can make the drink look amazing! Olives, lime, lemons, rosemary, cinnamon, mint leaves, salt and cucumber are some of the garnishes you can keep ready. After all, presentation matters!
Tip #5: Pick the right glass
The look of your drinks makes a world of difference to the drinking experience. Therefore pick the right glass for your cocktail and serve it in style!
Which glass you pick depends on the cocktail you’re serving. For instance, you take a highball glass for serving whiskey and rum, a glass with a stem for wines, and one with a conical top for your martini-style cocktails.
You can also take your cocktail serving style up a notch by choosing containers other than glasses, such as a coconut shell for your tender coconut mocktail.
Tip #6: Sample before serving
When you’re using a couple of different ingredients in a cocktail, it’s always best to be sure of the taste you’re creating. A little too sweet or a little less sour can change the cocktail experience completely. So you must taste and revise the mix, till you get the right proportions, to make that perfect drink!
Tip #7: Practice your theatrics
If you like a little drama, then you could add some theatrics to your cocktail party with a little trick of the hand. But you must practice, practice and practice, a lot before you pull out a stunt. With glass and bottles, one wrong move and it can be a huge mess, so be careful. There are many online videos that can help you start small, and go big as you get more comfortable with mixing theatrics with cocktails!
So those are our seven tips for those who want to make their cocktails be the talk of the party. Tell us how you used them and add them to this list for our other readers!
And don’t forget to stock up on your favourite cocktail flavours from SWA!