Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — Cocktails are fun because of the seemingly endless options of types and flavor. The various colors and distinct garnishes also make cocktails aesthetically pleasing. While it’s a feast for the eyes, making a cocktail requires skills and tools that one can master with simple tips and techniques that you can learn yourself.
Here are essential tips and techniques to kick off mixology at the comfort of your home.
Tip 1: Start making cocktails using basic kitchen tools
To start mixing drinks, you need to have the right equipment first. However, if you’re just a beginner, these professional bartending tools may seem intimidating — simple shakers, jiggers, or strainers are also known to be costly. Luckily, you don’t need to look far to find these types of equipment as you can use everyday kitchen tools to improvise. These alternatives are a jug, tumbler, shot glass, chopstick, kitchen knife, and a wooden spoon. If you have all these, then you can start mixing.
Tip 2: Balance out the cocktail with the right ratio of ingredients
Above all, a cocktail should be balanced. The essential ingredients are the base or spirit, which is the alcohol itself. This comes in the form of gin, vodka, rum, or brandy. Alongside the spirit are the modifier and sweetener which add additional flavor to the cocktail. These can range from spices, herbs, juices, or even soda. Lastly, ice and garnishes are essential to the mix too, just remember that various types of ice dilute differently. In addition to the basic ingredients, a good rule to follow is 2:1:1 ratio, which are 2 portions of spirit, 1 portion of modifier or mixer, and 1 portion of sweetener. For garnish, always opt for fresh ingredients, as fresher is always better.
Tip 3: Learn how to mix with different techniques
There are various mixing techniques for different types of alcohol. Some can get by with the simple technique of shaking or pouring, while other mixes require more mastery. These are rimming, chilling, stirring, muddling, blending, and layering. To know which technique to employ, learn more about the texture and type of alcohol you’re working with. Remember, these skills take time to develop, so have fun while you’re at it.