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The Best Tools for the Perfect Cocktail

Cocktail Friend Avatar  Published 12/03/2023 by Cocktail Friend

We've listed the best bar tools to craft the perfect cocktail - as well as where to find them (for the best price.)

Making the perfect cocktail requires a combination of skill, creativity, and the right tools. The trick is, you can't improve your skills without the right tools. That's where we're here to help. You don't have to be an expert mixologist to wow your party guests. With the right supplies, you can experiment and start creating amazing drinks at home, today!

Below are some essential tools you'll need, so let's get started:


The Cocktail Shaker

A shaker is used to mix and chill ingredients quickly. There are two types of shakers: the cobbler shaker (a three-piece shaker with a lid, cap, and built-in strainer) and the Boston shaker (a two-piece shaker consisting of a metal tin and a mixing glass). Both are effective, but the Boston shaker is preferred by many professionals.

The Jigger

A jigger is a measuring tool used to accurately pour the right amount of liquid into your cocktail. It usually has two sides with different measurements, like 1 oz and 1.5 oz or 30 ml and 45 ml. You don't have to spend a fortune on this, but we do recommend getting one that cleans easily, won't rust, and clearly shows liquid measurements

The Bar Spoon

A long-handled spoon used for stirring cocktails. The twisted handle design allows for better control and mixing. If you think a standard spoon will do the trick, think again! Bar spoons are specifically designed for mixing without splshing the ingredients of your drink onto the counter. They are also easy to clean.

The Strainer

When using a Boston shaker, you'll need a separate strainer to strain the cocktail into your glass and keep ice and large ingredients out. A Hawthorne strainer is commonly used for this purpose. The strainers we listed below fit on most common sizes of shakers. Cheap ones can rust over time, but they are quite affordable and the ones we tested are great, at at low price.

The Fine Mesh Strainer

Sometimes, you may want to strain out small pulp or debris from freshly squeezed juice. A fine mesh strainer is perfect for this task. While the strainer above is great for cocktail shakers, the fine mesh strainer comes in multiple sizes and can be used with virtually any glass size.

The Muddler

This tool is essential for mashing fruits, herbs, and spices in the bottom of the glass to release their flavors and aromas. It's commonly used in cocktails like Mojitos and Old Fashioneds, but it can be used in virtually any drink that calls for muddled or mashed fruit. It will make your drink taste better, but it's also really fun to use.

The Citrus Juicer

Freshly squeezed juice enhances the taste of cocktails. While store-bought juices are fine, they often contain artificial ingredients, sugar additives, and just do not taste as good as pure juice. A handheld citrus juicer allows you to extract juice from lemons, limes, or oranges easily. You'll taste the difference.

The Peeler / Zester

For cocktails that require garnishes like citrus twists or zest, a peeler or zester will help you create appealing garnishes. It not only looks great, but it adds a wonderful aroma when you take that first sip. We made it a point to find you ones that can do both, in one tool, for the lowest cost.

The Ice Tray / Molder

Ice is a crucial element in cocktails, so having good-quality ice is important. Invest in an ice tray or mold that creates large, clear cubes or spheres. The higher end molds are easier to clean and make the best looking ice cubes. We also highly recommend using purified water, or the ice may make the drink taste odd and the cubes will be white instead of clear.

The Mister / Sprayer Bottle

This tool is not essential, but it's handy for adding a fine mist of absinthe or other spirits to your drinks for an aromatic touch. While we do recommend having one on hand, we don't see the point in spending a fortune for the higher end misters. Go with the one we have below and you can't go wrong. It's easy and affordable.

The Blender or Drink Mixer

If you plan on making frozen or blended cocktails, a reliable blender is a must-have tool. You can also go the cheaper route and get the drink mixer, which is much smaller and specifically designed for cocktails. We have a couple options below. One is a lower-cost mixer model that will get the basic job done. The higher end models will always blend better, last longer, and be more powerful - but they obviously can cost a bit more and might be a bit overkill unless you're making iced/blended drinks specifically.

The Bar Towels

Keeping your workspace clean and dry is essential. Bar towels or cloths are useful for wiping spills and cleaning up messes. This link provides many options.

The Garnish Picks & Sticks

To hold garnishes like olives, cherries, or cocktail onions neatly in place, garnish picks or sticks are quite useful. These can come in some really cool designs, including swords and pool sticks. Have fun with these or go with a classic look for the more elegant evenings.


The Conclusion...

These tools will cover the basics, but as you delve deeper into mixology, you might find some specialized tools that suit your preferences and cocktail creations. We also provided you with some helpful links, which are definitely worth exploring if you are serious about crafting quality drinks.

Remember, the perfect cocktail also depends on high-quality ingredients and your creativity, so don't hesitate to experiment and have fun!


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