Our Mixed Drinks Guide: Stock a Bar and Make Cocktails Like a Pro

Our Mixed Drinks Guide: Stock a Bar and Make Cocktails Like a Pro
Our Mixed Drinks Guide: Stock a Bar and Make Cocktails Like a Pro

Enjoying a well-crafted mixed drink is a delightful way to unwind after a long day or enhance a special moment with loved ones. If you’ve always wondered how bartenders create those perfect concoctions at your favorite bar, you’ll be thrilled to know that making cocktails like a pro is easier than you might think. With our comprehensive bar supply shopping list and a collection of classic alcoholic drink recipes, you can serve up delicious, high-quality mixed drinks right in the comfort of your own home.

Stocking Your Home Bar

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7 cocktail premixes to try when you’re missing your favourite bar | Vogue India

Before you embark on your mixology journey, it’s important to ensure that your home bar is fully stocked with the essential ingredients and tools. Here’s a checklist to guide you in assembling the necessary supplies:

  1. Liquor : Choose spirits that you personally enjoy or base your selection on your favorite alcoholic drink recipes. If you’re unsure where to start, consider stocking whiskey, gin, vodka, tequila, rum, or vermouth.

  2. Mixers : Mixers are a vital component of most cocktails. Some basic mixers to have on hand include carbonated water, tonic water, lemon-lime seltzer, and ginger ale.

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  3. Garnishes : Elevate your mixed drinks with garnishes. Popular options include maraschino cherries, olives, lemon peels, and lime and lemon wedges.

  4. Ice : Keep your cocktails cool and refreshing by having approximately one pound of ice cubes per person, and more for warm-weather gatherings.

  5. Bar glasses : You don’t need an extensive collection of glassware. Ten- to 16-ounce all-purpose glasses will work for most alcoholic drinks and offer versatility.

  6. Bar tools : Ensure you have a few essential bar tools within reach, such as a cocktail shaker, bottle opener, and corkscrew. If you’re new to home bartending, consider investing in a bar tool set. Additionally, a blender can come in handy for making frozen drinks.

By following this checklist, you’ll have a well-stocked bar that allows you to create a wide variety of mixed drinks.

The Art of Mixing Drinks at Home

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7 cocktail premixes to try when you’re missing your favourite bar | Vogue India

Once your home bar is ready, it’s time to delve into the art of mixing drinks. Below, you’ll find a list of classic alcoholic drink recipes, along with a few variations, to help you get started. Keep a mixed drink list with the recipes near your bar, so you won’t have to guess the measurements when inspiration strikes. All of these recipes serve one, unless stated otherwise.

  1. Bourbon Sour :

    • In a cocktail shaker, combine ice cubes, ¼ cup bourbon (or desired whiskey), 2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice, and 2 teaspoons to 1 tablespoon of your preferred sweetener (sugar, maple syrup, simple syrup, etc.).
    • Shake well to mix and strain into a chilled glass.
    • Add ice cubes, if desired, and garnish with an orange twist and a maraschino cherry on a skewer.
  2. Vodka Sour :

    • Prepare the Bourbon Sour as directed but substitute ¼ cup vodka for the bourbon.
  3. Bloody Mary :

    • In a cocktail shaker, combine ice cubes, ⅓ cup chilled tomato juice, 3 tablespoons vodka, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, a dash of celery salt, and a dash of black pepper or bottled hot pepper sauce.
    • Shake well to mix and pour into a chilled glass.
    • Add ice cubes, if desired, and garnish with a celery stalk or other creative garnishes.
    • You can also make a batch of Bloody Marys ahead of time and chill them for the flavors to meld. Stir before serving.
  4. Daiquiri :

    • In a cocktail shaker, combine cracked ice, 3 tablespoons light rum, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 1 teaspoon powdered sugar, and 1 teaspoon orange liqueur.
    • Shake well to mix and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
  5. Frozen Daiquiris :

    • In a blender, combine one 6-ounce can of frozen limeade or lemonade concentrate and ⅔ cup rum.
    • Cover and blend until smooth.
    • With the blender running, add 2½ to 3 cups of ice cubes, one at a time, through the lid’s opening.
    • Blend until slushy, and serve in 4-ounce servings. This recipe makes approximately six servings.

These recipes are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to mixing drinks at home. Experiment with different combinations and flavors to discover your personal favorites.

Expand Your Repertoire

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7 cocktail premixes to try when you’re missing your favourite bar | Vogue India

Now that you’ve mastered the basics, why not elevate your mixed drink experience further? Consider these additional ideas to enhance your home bartending skills:

-Explore different types of cocktails, such as martinis, margaritas, mojitos, and old fashioneds. Each category has its own unique flavors and styles.

  • Experiment with flavored spirits and liqueurs to add depth and complexity to your cocktails. Try flavored vodkas, fruit liqueurs, or herbal liqueurs like Chartreuse or absinthe.

  • Learn how to muddle fruits and herbs to extract their flavors. This technique is often used in drinks like the Mojito or the Old Fashioned.

  • Invest in some specialty glassware for specific cocktails, such as martini glasses, highball glasses, or margarita glasses. Presentation can make a big difference in the overall drinking experience.

  • Consider creating your own signature cocktail by experimenting with different combinations of spirits, mixers, and garnishes. Get creative and have fun!

  • Research and learn about the history and origins of classic cocktails. Understanding the stories behind these drinks can deepen your appreciation for them.

  • Attend mixology classes or workshops to learn from professionals and gain valuable tips and techniques.

  • Keep a well-stocked collection of non-alcoholic ingredients, such as fresh fruit juices, soda water, grenadine, and flavored syrups. This way, you can cater to guests who prefer non-alcoholic options or create mocktails for yourself.

Remember, the world of mixology is vast and ever-evolving. Don’t be afraid to experiment, try new recipes, and put your own twist on classic drinks. With time and practice, you’ll become a master home bartender, impressing your friends and family with your delicious creations. Cheers!

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