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The cocktail section has already been inaugurated with the first drink, I chose an easy one, which does not require special equipment and ingredients, but actually what is needed to prepare cocktails at home without having to spend a fortune? The Bartender Equipment available are many, but I assure you that you can start preparing all the cocktails you that come to mind without having them all. In this article I will show you what the tools, their specific names and their uses are. Finally, I will show you the essential things you need and how to become a perfect homemade barman!
Let’s start with the basic Bartender Equipment that is used to prepare cocktails. First, we will discuss the tools needed for preparation.
- Shaker: I would say that we all know the classic shaker made of steel, formed by three parts, the steel cup, the perforated upper part that fits into the glass, to pour the liquid without dropping the ice and the cap that serves to seal the upper part during the shake.
- Boston Shaker: is made up of two parts, the glass one and the steel one that are stuck together. Some models have a rubber gasket applied to the glass part, that is to say the one that fits into the other one in steel. The purpose of this gasket is to prevent spillage, if it is not properly fitted and to facilitate its opening, because in some cases if not properly closed it can be difficult to open, but nevertheless, this is precisely what I recommend, more next I will explain why.
- Mixing Glass and Mixing Spoon: and a large glass, sometimes also equipped with a pitcher like jug, where cocktails are prepared with ice, mixed with the Mixing Spoon, a long steel spoon and then filtered and poured into the glass. Although initially there are no differences between a shaker and mixing glass, the preparation of the same cocktail in one or the other diversifies the taste and appearance. Think of the famous phrase:
shaken, not stirred
- Blender: Powerful and solid, able to blend even ice or to create the famous “frozen” ice.
- Punch bowls: large bowls where all the ingredients are poured to prepare the punches
Cocktail Making Accessories
Now let’s move on to accessories for cocktails, useful to combine with the equipment you have just seen:
- Cocktail Strainer: the classic strainer that is used to filter away excess water from shakers and glasses before the actual preparation, to filter cocktails from the Boston or Mixing Glass to prevent ice from falling or any parts that must not end in the glass for example the citrus peel. There are several models:
- Julep spoon-shaped with holes;
- Net Strainer as the classic strainer but with a very thick net;
- Vintage Strainer made perforated scoop, with the support tabs, equipped with a spring adaptable to most of receptacles measures. However, there are different sizes.
- Muddler: it is a knurled pestle, which is used to crush citrus fruits and fruit to prepare cocktails (mojito type).
- Mixing Spoon, Bar Spoon: two names, one tool. Spoon mixing is a spoon with a particularly long handle that is used to add sugar-like ingredients to a cocktail or as the name implies mixing ingredients in a mixing glass or glass. It should not be used as a normal teaspoon, the stem is rotated between the fingers, moving it slightly from the bottom upwards. There are different models and styles. Some at the tip, have a Muddler, serves in the preparation of crushed cocktails (as in the mojito), or a small fork.
- Jigger: they are measuring cups for cocktails. The most classic is an hourglass shape and is used to measure the ingredients. Very useful for those who begin to approach the preparation of cocktails. The expert barman will be able to measure the ingredients by eye, in fact for a long time they have been objects to avoid. Nowadays, they are back in vogue as a scenic accessory during processing;
- Pour: they are spout caps made of steel and rubber to put on the bottles. They are used to dose American Bar distillates and liqueurs. They work with an air filter. It can also be plastic.
- Bitter spoon: to dissolve the sugar cube for the classic preparation of absinthe.
There are other bartender equipment like Seltz, Siphons, Glass Rimmer to rim glasses of salt or sugar, and many other junk, but it’s always good to learn to walk before you run! There are other tools that do not need great explanations, such as the citrus squeezer, small knife and cutting board to cut fruit and vegetables and to create your own decorations, open bottles, corkscrews, ice bucket and tongs, decoration tongs (in hygiene rules at the bar you should not touch food decorations with your hands), scissors, caps to close bottles of wine and those for sparkling wines, grater and lemon line, ice breakers, straws, umbrellas napkins, stirrer service toothpicks, etc.
Surely you are wondering, do I really have to get all these things?? The answer is no! Now I will list the essential bartender equipment to have home to start. Obviously some things we already have at home, others can be replaced and others if you want you can buy them over time.
Cocktail Equipment Set to Have at Home
- Boston Shaker I recommend this model even though I’ve described it as the most “difficult” to use. By purchasing this you will have at your disposal a shaker and a mixing glass, or rather a glass and a steel one (there are also totally steel models).
- Vintage Strainer because it adapts to containers of different diameters.
- Mixing Spoon with the tip muddler, even here you can have two tools in one.
- Jigger Classic hourglass, at least a couple to have 4 sizes available.
- Tumbler glasses of small, medium and large size.
- Double cocktail Cups
The Bartender Equipment you need in proportion to everything I have described (which is not even all of it) is very little. You can buy straws and umbrellas with ease, corkscrews, citrus squeezers, grater and the like we already have in our kitchen, so you can also have glasses like flutes and champagne cups at home. To break the ice, in the absence of a suitable blender, because not everyone chops the ice, you can put it in a cloth and break it with a beat meat, it is not an elegant method but who does for himself… and starting from the broken ice with a good pinner and a narrow and solid container you can prepare frozen cocktails. As you can see many accessories are commonly used at home and for the rest you can find substitutes and temporary alternatives to prepare our drinks.
Cin Cin, Salut, Cheers, Kampai