Following are some general ideas and hints to help start your own cocktail bar.
You'll need a supply of carbonated mixers – soda, mineral water, tonic, lemon soda pop, cola, dry ginger-ale, etc, oranges and lemons and some garnishes – maraschino cherries, nutmeg, mint leaves, chocolate flakes, etc.
Ideally, you should have a cocktail shaker, a blender, a mixing glass, an ice bucket with tongs, a spirit measure and, of course, a variety of glasses.
If you don't with to get involved in special bar equipment, it's amazing how you can dapt kitchen odds and ends.
If you dont want to buy a cocktail shaker, a milk shaker will do – even a glass jar with a lid. (You'll have to have a seperate strainer, of course, but most kitchens have these.)
For a mixing glass, any clean kitchen jug will do. (You can keep ice in a kitchen jug for that matter.)
If you don't have a blender, you can shake (vigorously) practically all blended cocktails shown.
We suggest you invest in a simple spirit measure. However, if you do not have one, the measures shown refer to a measure of 1 oz / 30ml / approximately 2 tablespoons.
Other items you can borrow from the kitchen for your bar are: a bottle can/opener, bottle tops, a sharp knife and cutting board, a fruit juice squeezer, spoons (long spoons for floating and stirring), tongs, a cloth (for wiping and keeping your bar area clean), toothpicks, etc. Also (to add to your ingredients), nutmeg, worcestershire sauce and cloves.
There are dozens of different types of glasses, but don't feel you have to have one particular type of glass for every style of drink. These days mixed drinks and cocktails can be served in virtually any glass.
Long glasses are recommended for the long mixed drinks. Other names for this type of glass are Highball and Collins.
Short Glasses are for mixed drinks and cocktails such as Manhattans, Rum Sours, etc. Other names for these glasses are Old Fashioned and Whisky Tumbler.
Stemmed Glasses are for cocktails such as Dream Girl, Almond Royal, etc. Other names for these glasses are Cocktail, Martini, Champagne Saucer, etc.
In these recipes we have suggested you start by mixing the ingredients with ice in a shaker, blender or mixing glass.
Mixed drinks with either cream or fruit jucie have to be strained after mixing into your “presentation” glass.
Often ice can be added again at this stage,
Garnishes are usually the last addition. Straws are always optional.
Ice: cubed ice from the refrigerator will do most times. Where crushed ice is specified, it can be made by placing cubed ice blocks in a towel and crushing them.
Glasses: Chill glasses where possible by placing them in the refrigerator for a short time prior to serving. Another way is to fill glasses with crushed ice just prior to serving.
Crusting: “Cursting” a glass is simple – merely wet the rim of the glass by revolving a slice of lemon (lime or orange) around it then dip the rim of the glass into a saucer of sugar. The sugar will stick to the rim of the glass.
Eggwhites: Seperating eggwhites from yolks is an art in itself. Short of juggling two half egg shells side by side and passing the yolk back and forth while allowing the white to drop down into a bowl beneath, we suggest you purchase a small, inexpensive plastic eggwhite separator.
You can store eggwhites in a sealed jar in the fridge for a short time (a good idea if you're expecting to entertain numbers of people).
Twist of Peel: A twist of lemon peel (or lime) is simply a thin strip of the skin of a lemon. Twist the strip gently, allowing the zest (the oil) from the lemon to drop into the drink. Then add the twist itself to the drink.
A Dash: A dash is generally 1 or 2 drops...a twist of the wrist!
We suggest using pure cream, not thickened.
AND FINALLY, ENJOY RESPONSIBLY
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