cocktail making equipment

Cocktail Making Equipment Essentials

If you’re a cocktail lover and want to create your own bespoke creations at home, it’s important to have the right equipment. There’s a lot of gear out there, but most bartenders only use a few key pieces to get the job done.

For example, a shaker for shaken drinks and a glass to stir them in are all that’s needed. But if you’re making a spirit-forward drink, like an Old Fashioned or Martini, you may also need a jigger.


Jiggers are essential for bartenders to have behind the bar as they provide an accurate measure of liquid ingredients. Every recipe is based on a ratio of different ingredients, so having an accurate jigger can make all the difference in making a good cocktail.

Jiggers come in many different styles and types, so it is important to know which one will work best for you. There are a few main types of jiggers that are commonly used by bartenders, including double jiggers, Japanese jiggers and bell jiggers.

A double jigger is often called the basic bar jigger and features an hourglass shape. This makes it easy for bartenders to pour into without spilling the alcohol on the floor. They also help bartenders pour a consistent amount of liquor into each glass, which is key for delivering quality drinks to their customers.

Another popular jigger is the Japanese jigger, which has a tall and slim design and is easier to pour from than other jiggers. It is a staple for professionals, but also makes a great addition to any cocktail set at home.

Finally, a bell jigger is another popular jigger that looks great and helps bartenders pour into their glasses with ease. These jiggers have a curved bell-shaped cup and slender neck, which makes them a popular choice for professionals and those at-home looking for an elegant option to mix their cocktails.

Bar jiggers are usually made from metal, but you can also find plastic ones that are durable enough for bartender use. However, metal jiggers tend to look better and stand the test of time much more easily than plastic ones. They also don’t have to be cleaned as frequently as plastic ones, which is a plus for busy bars.


Strainers are an essential part of the cocktail making process and are used to transfer cocktails from the mixing vessel to the glass while keeping ice at bay. They can be used with any type of shaker and are an important tool for any home bar.

The most common strainers include the Hawthorne, julep, and fine mesh strainers. They come in a variety of designs and are usually made of stainless steel. They are easy to clean and are perfect for a home bar.

They have springs that fit snugly inside the glass or shaker and trap large chunks of ice, herbs, or other solid ingredients. They also help to keep muddled fruits or mint leaves out of the drink and prevent them from getting stuck in your teeth.

There are also some cocktail strainers that have a handle and finger tabs for easy use. These are usually more comfortable to hold than ones with a prong style, and they can be a good option for people who have arthritis or other issues that make it difficult to grip.

Another popular type of cocktail strainer is the julep strainer, which is similar to the Hawthorne strainer but with round edges and perforated holes on its head plate. These are used to strain out muddled fruit, seeds, and herbs from the cocktail.

They can also be used with a fine mesh strainer to filter out small pieces of ice and fruit pulp that could get in the way of your drink’s final flavor. The term “double strain” is commonly used to describe this process, and it is an excellent technique for ensuring that your drink is as clean as possible when it’s served.

Bar Spoon

Bar Spoons are specialized equipment that makes the mixing process easier for mixologists. They are often used in place of conventional teaspoons, but they can also be used for stirring. They are crafted from stainless steel and are easy to clean, durable, and won’t affect the flavor of cocktails.

Most bar spoons are sized between 30 and 40 centimeters (12-15 inches) long. They are usually flat on one end and have a fork-shaped end.

They are most commonly used to measure liquids, but they can be used for stirring, muddling, and layering drinks. They can be made of various materials, including metal and plastic.

There are several types of bar spoons available on the market, but many of them are American in style. They have a twisted handle and often have a red plastic cap at the end.

The flat end of a bar spoon can be used to muddle or micro-muddle ingredients, and it is especially useful for putting small amounts of mint in drinks like Old Fashioneds or Gin and Tonics. The spiral handle can also be used to layer drinks, allowing the added liquid to slowly spread over the top of the drink without mixing with the rest.

These utensils are great for layering and can help create color gradients in cocktails. They can also be used to create drinks with colorful liqueurs or spirits, like the New York Sour and the B-52 shot.

Japanese bar spoons are also a popular choice for mixing because they are longer and skinnier than their western counterparts. They also have a teardrop-shaped end that can be used to crack ice or muddle ingredients. They typically measure 2.5ml (half a teaspoon). They are perfect for both novice and expert bartenders alike, and they are easy to use.


Shakers are the primary pieces of equipment used to make cocktails. They aerate and dilute ingredients, and also mix them quickly and easily. They’re often used with citrus juices, cream or egg whites.

There are a few different types of shakers and each has its own advantages. The most common type is the cobbler shaker, which has a tumbler with a lid and strainer cap. This type of shaker is a perfect choice for beginners as it’s easy to use and doesn’t require any other tools or supplies.

Another type of shaker is the Boston shaker. This is a two-piece shaker made of metal, glass or plastic. The bottom is inserted into the mixing container for shaking, but it can be used separately as well for stirring or muddling. A separate strainer is required if crushed ice is used.

A Boston shaker can come in various sizes and can hold up to 20 imp fl oz (570 ml). Bartenders usually add a Hawthorne strainer to the top of their shakers before pouring the contents into a serving glass. This allows them to remove any smaller pulp or seeds from their drink.

Some bartenders believe that you should always dry shake a cocktail, which means shaking without ice. This is a great way to make sure that any egg whites are properly mixed with the other ingredients, and it also makes sure that the ingredients create the proper amount of frothiness.

The best cocktail shakers are made of durable materials that are easy to clean and maintain. They should be able to seal and open with no effort and be able to stand up to frequent use. They should be able to resist rust and wear. They should also be leak-proof and come with a cleaning brush to keep them in good condition.

Mixing Glass

Mixing Glasses are an essential tool in any bartender’s arsenal. They’re used to stir drinks rather than shake them, which allows for more control over temperature, texture and dilution. They’re also a great way to preserve the taste and aroma of your favorite liquors.

Traditional cocktail glasses are typically cylindrical in shape with a slightly tapered base and a pour spout on the side. Some are footed, like old-school styles, while others have a more rounded bowl and a stem.

They can be made from a variety of materials, including crystal or glass. If you want a durable vessel that will stand up to heavy use, you should opt for a stainless steel option.

If you don’t mind spending a bit more, you can find a crystal glass that’s specifically designed for mixing cocktails. Some are even dishwasher-safe, making them a smart choice for home mixologists and professionals.

For a more sophisticated look, opt for a glass that’s crafted from cut crystal, such as this model from Crate & Barrel. It’s part of the brand’s Hatch bar collection and does a great job at blending in with your decor.

In addition to being aesthetically pleasing, this cocktail glass is a great addition to your barware collection for the price. It’s dishwasher-safe and can be used to make up to two cocktails at once, with a large pour spout for easy pouring.

The Pina Barware Hand Cut Mixing Glass is a professional cocktail glass intended for bartenders working in commercial restaurants and bars. It’s beautifully crafted with seamless walls and a generous capacity of 700 milliliters, which is perfect for mixing between two to five cocktails at once.