• How to Shake a Cocktail Like a Professional

    How to Shake a Cocktail Like a Professional

Did you know that there’s a right and wrong way to shake a cocktail? Just throwing the shaker over your shoulder and hoping for the best definitely isn’t the right way to go about it. There’s an etiquette to cocktail shaking that you need to know before you give it a go. Not only does this help you steer clear of injuries, but it also leads to perfect drinks every time.

What is Cocktail Shaking?

Shaking is most bartenders' go-to method for mixing and chilling a cocktail, allowing the ice to dilute your drink for a more palatable taste. It also creates a smoother, frothier drink than stirring, aerating the cocktail to create plenty of body. Although it is vital to get it right, shaking is actually pretty easy and uncomplicated, despite how it can look!

What You Need to Shake a Cocktail

Aside from ingredients, there are three main items you need for cocktail shaking:

  • Cocktail shaker
  • Strainer
  • Drinking glass

Start with the cocktail shaker. There are many different types available, but the most common are the Boston and the Cobbler. The Boston (or Tin-on-Tin, as it’s also known) is made up of two cups that fit together for a watertight seal. This is most commonly used by professionals and can be a little trickier than the Cobbler, so we wouldn’t recommend it for first-time shakers. However, if you’re up for a challenge or are already used to shaking with a Cobbler, it’s definitely fun to give it a go! You can create some truly stunning drinks using this shaker. 

The Cobbler (also known as the Three-Piece) is easier to use, with one larger part making up the “cup” and a smaller lid that sits on top. They also frequently have a built-in strainer, which is less fiddly than placing your own on top. 

Finally, you need a strainer. This is used to keep any lumps, bumps, and bits out of your drink when pouring. It keeps ice in the shaker, too, making it easier to pour your drink.

How to Shake a Cocktail

Once you’ve filled your shaker with all the necessary ingredients, it’s time to get shaking! Pick up your cocktail shaker and turn it on its side, before shaking for around 15 seconds. Here are the different ways you can shake your drink:

  • Up and down for plenty of noise
  • A super-fast shake to impress guests and speed up the process
  • Over your shoulder with one hand on either end

The more you shake, the more the ice is going to bounce around, creating plenty of noise and diluting your drink. For a really good, professional shake, remember to look confident!

Learn More About Mixing the Perfect Drinks

Creating cocktails is undoubtedly an art. If you’d like to become a cocktail master and learn how to fix drinks, take a look at our Educational Spirit Courses. All online, they’re your one-stop shop to become a mixologist master!

Image: Maksym Fesenko / Shutterstock.com

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