I totally love cocktails!!! I would say after beauty and fashion they would be my favourite hobby. I love trying new cocktails I have never tried before, I love inventing new cocktail recipes. I love picking the perfect glass to serve them in and the perfect garnish to serve them with. Not forgetting how much I love just being in a cocktail bar. So basically, I love everything about cocktails.
This, over the years, has lead to me collecting a lot of cocktail paraphernalia. Some amazing bits and some bits I’ve looked back and realised I don’t need. This has helped me to refine my perfect set of bar tools, the things I think you need to create the perfect cocktail but not only that, that look the part too.
The first thing you need is a cocktail shaker – there are soooo many options out there, I feel like there are currently more than ever on the market place, so you can definitely get one to suit your style and budget. One of my favourite choices though, is the Kate Spade glass and gold spot shaker. I think there is something much nicer about a glass shaker, than a pure metal shaker. I got this one from John Lewis and it cost £50.
The next essential tool is a jigger. To those of you who don’t know, this is the double sided tool used to measure out a single or double shot. I use this all the time, not just for measuring out spirits, but also syrups and juices. This may be my favourite choice from the whole post, as I just love this rose gold, pineapple jigger from Oliver Bonas. It comes with a palm tree spoon and it costs £23.
You also need a good muddler to smash up all fruits, leaves or whatever else you are popping in your cocktail that needs mashing up in order to release its flavours. A lot of them are really boring. My favourite ever one is actually from America and so you can’t get it over here, but it is marble and gold and truly beautiful. However; another pretty one that available in the UK is this gold one, which is part of a Dunelm set. It comes with a spoon with a masher on the end as well as a strainer.
A strainer is really useful for preventing unwanted ice or fruit/leaves etc. going into your cocktail glass. So you will definitely want one of those if you want to pour out the perfect cocktail.
Some really lovely cocktail spoons are another must have for your bar tools collection. Certain cocktail recipes aren’t designed to be shaken, but stirred instead. This beautiful set of rose gold and gold spoons are from Oliver Bonas but are sadly no longer available, but drinkstuff do a lot of lovely options too.
I really like a straw with quite a lot of my cocktails, but I find a lot of the pretty straws are cardboard, which then leads to a soggy straw pretty quickly. So I searched for quite a long time, to find some straws that were still in the rose gold / copper colour palette but that weren’t cardboard. These are metal straws (which are much more environmentally friendly) and they are from amazon and come in a pack of 4 for £9.
The next one may seem a little unusual to some of you, but I think having the right type of ice also makes a big difference to a cocktail. No one wants a giant chunk of ice in their small cocktail glass. Below are a selection of three different types of ice trays I use – heart, pineapple and traditional balls. I like to use the fun shapes for more fun cocktails and then use the balls (below each ice cube ball has a blueberry in it) for a more traditional cocktail. Crushed ice is another really useful type of ice to have on hand.
One of THE most important things to own, if you want to make a good cocktail, is the right type of glassware. You need to enjoy the delicious, perfectly prepared cocktail from the right glass. Martinis served in martini glasses not a thick rimmed tumbler and just generally using glasses that are appealing to the eye. Using attractive or quirky glassware can add so much to the whole cocktail experience.
My last one is a bit of an extra – as it isn’t really THAT necessary, but it is a nice to have and that is an attractive chopping board and fruit knife to prepare the garnishes. My favourite is this lovely marble and copper set from Lakeland which is £39.99.