Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice Vs. Store Bought Lemon Juice
Fresh squeezed is always better than store-bought. Hands down. I’ve tried to find a store bought I like, I really have, and they all are too bitter or overly sour without being flavorful. The bitter ones taste like the whole fruit was ground up and strained. Which does add the valuable lemon oils from the zest but also adds the awful bitter pith. Others have an overly sour taste that natural lemon juice could never have while somehow being flavorless. Fresh squeeze is a lot more work but the quality of the flavor is miles better. If you plan on making a lot of juice maybe wear rubber gloves because all that lemon juice and oil does a number on your hands after a while.
Best Tools For Juicing Citrus
The best tool to use to get fresh squeezed is the squeezer that inverts the fruit instead of the one that has a ridged spiky thing that goes into the fruit. I really don’t know how else to describe it so here is a picture.
There are pros and cons to both. The juice from the squeeze tool tastes the best because a little oil from the rind is released too, but it’s the most labor-intensive. The kind with the ridged spike is easier to use but since no oil is released from the rind it is not as flavorful as the squeeze tool. This can be mitigated by adding a couple of drops of lemon essential oil.
American Style Lemonade vs. English & Australian Style Lemonade
Depending on your country, if you order a lemonade, what you get could be very different. In countries like the United States, India, and most of Asia lemonade is still, non-carbonated drink, primarily flavored with lemon juice. Actually that is lemonade in most counties with the exceptions to this being the UK and Australia. In the UK and Australia, lemonade is a clear carbonated drink primarily flavored with lemon oil. In the United States this is seen as a lemon flavored soda. In Italy, lemonade is a carbonated drink primarily flavored with lemon juice. Like San Pellegrino’s Limonata. Making the Italian style halfway between the American and UK style lemonades. These two primary styles are often distinguished as cloudy vs clear lemonade, but i prefer still vs carbonated. Not that any of this really matters unless you’re traveling or reading a recipe from a different country. First time I made a Pimm’s Cup I used American style lemonade, not really realizing it is a British cocktail and i should be using Sprite or 7up. Same goes for the shandy. Just something to keep in mind.
Is Lemonade Healthier Than Soda
No, not necessarily. The unhealthy part of soda is its high amount of sugar, and lemonade has just as much sugar as soda. Some store-bought lemonades have more sugar than a soda. For example an 8 oz Coke has 26g of sugar and here are the grams of sugar in some store-bought lemonades.
Simply Lemonade: 28g sugar, 11% lemon juice
Newman’s Own Lemonade: 25g sugar, %15 lemon juice
Minute Maid Lemonade: 17g sugar, 11% lemon juice
Tropicana Lemonade: 28g sugar, 10% lemon juice
The list goes on, but as you can see, lemonade is worse than a Coke in some cases because extra sugar is needed to offset the sourness of the lemons. You can also see a correlation between how much sugar is added and how much lemon juice a drink has. For comparison my recipe it is 16% lemon juice with 31g of sugar. Oh no, my recipe is the most unhealthy of all but it also has the most lemon juice. If you want healthy, drink water.
What Is The Best Lemonade Recipe Ratio?
A standard base ratio for making lemonade is:
1 Part lemon juice
1 Part sugar
4 Parts water
This ratio results in a generally pleasing sweet-to-sour flavor and is similar to most other high-quality recipes. This ratio can be adjusted to make for lemonade that is either sweeter or more sour. Use the 1:1:4 ratio as a baseline. Some recipes that have less lemon juice will add granulated citric acid and lemon oil to make up for containing less juice as they try to save money. And this isn’t bad. Citric acid and lemon oil taste great together, but its still being done to get it close to the flavor of the 1:1:4 ratio.
The Jägerbomb is a caffeinated alcoholic cocktail. Think of it as the precursor to drinks like Four Locos or Sparks. Red Bull was invented in 1987 in Austria and marketed as a premium energy sold at ski resorts. Before Red Bull, energy drinks were mainly seen as a working men’s drinks and were popular among tradesmen and truckers. They still are today. However, Red Bull marketed their product differently and exclusively distributed with European ski resorts. This gave Red Bull an image of exclusivity and luxury. In 1996, Red Bull was first imported into the United States. It was marketed to ski resorts and sporting events, handed out for free on University campuses, and sold in stores. I remember the very attractive Red Bull girls driving up on campus in their Red Bull Mini Cooper, handing out free drinks. It didn’t take long for Red Bull to get mixed with alcohol.
Funny enough, the Jägerbomb was the first drink I ever had at a bar after turning 21. I forget the bar’s name, but I can still see it in my head. My sisters took me out, and I had no idea what anything on the menu was, so I asked for a Guinness because it was the only thing I recognized. My oldest sister stopped me and said, “No, make it something fun. Let’s start this night right.” She ordered me a Jägerbomb, and I remember liking it. I still like it. It’s a pointless, dumb story, but this was my first cocktail at a bar.
The oldest printed recipe for the Adonis comes from the 1916 book “Jack’s Manual” by Jack Grohusko. The Adonis recipe in this book is 40% Sherry, 60% sweet vermouth, and 2 dashes of orange bitters. Though this recipe is older, a more authoritative source is the 1935 old Waldorf-Astoria Bar Book by Albert Crockett. Crockett lists the recipe as 50×50 Sherry and sweet vermouth with orange bitters and states:
Named in honor of a theatrical offering which first made Henry E Dixey and Fanny Ward famous.
The play the author is talking about is an 1884 burlesque musical called “Adonis.” Written by, directed by, and starring Henry E. Dixey, Adonis was a famous play during its time. Interestingly, the bamboo recipe in Jack’s Manual and the Waldorf-Astoria is almost identical to the adonis. In the Waldorf-Astoria, is it the same drink. No difference at all.
The Adonis vs. The Bamboo Cocktail
The Adonis and Bamboo are the same drink with different names. In the 1935 Waldorf-Astoria Bar Book, both recipes are the same. No difference at all. The same recipe copy pasted, which is fine. Just keep in mind they are the same. Some books will distinguish between the two by making the Adonis 2/3 sweet vermouth and 1/3 sherry and the Bamboo 50×50 sherry and sweet vermouth. But the Waldorf-Astoria listed them as the same drink with different names, and the Waldorf-Astoria was a very authoritative source of pre-prohibition recipes.
The oldest printed recipe I can find for the Godfather cocktail comes from a 1978 issue of “The Friends of Wine.” A simple cocktail of scotch and amaretto, the Godfather is a fantastic modern cocktail that sips like an old-fashioned. The Godfather cocktail was invented in the 1970s, taking inspiration from the 1972 Francis Ford Coppola movie “The Godfather.” The blend of scotch and the Italian almond liqueur amaretto gives the Godfather a gentle nutty cherry sweetness. Many modern recipes will use equal parts amaretto and scotch, but I find those to be a bit overwhelming and overly sweet. Older recipes tend to use 1.5 ounces of scotch to half an ounce or 2/3 of an ounce of amaretto, which makes for a better drink.
If you have never had a Godfather, it is a fantastic drink you should try. Taste is subjective, but less amaretto is better than more.
Anyone who grew up poor knows sun tea is a cheap way to make a ton of tea for the kids without heating a ton of water. The kids are running around in the backyard, all sweaty and gross and covered in dirt, and you show up as the hero with refreshing tea, and they grow up with happy memories. That’s what sun tea is. My mom made this for me and my siblings when we were younger, and now I make it for my kids.
How Many Bags To Make 1 Gallon Of Sun Tea?
Most folks use about 10 to 12 normal-sized bags for 1 gallon, depending on how strong you like the tea to taste. You could do as little as 8 bags per gallon, but don’t do less than that.
Sun Tea Dangers
To preface, I am not a food scientist. These are just my opinions. Consult a doctor before putting anything in your body. So apparently, sun tea is dangerous now. I’ve been drinking this my whole life, and neither I nor anyone I know has become sick from it. But that’s just anecdotal evidence. If you do a Google search for sun tea now, the top-ranking articles and suggestions are all about how sun tea is dangerous and should never be consumed. This fear stems from a 1996 article by the CDC called “Memo on Bacterial Contamination of Iced Tea.” The article argues that since sun tea is not heated above 165°F (74°C) and left in the sun for a few hours, dangerous germs could grow and should not be consumed after 8 hours of brewing. It doesn’t mention anyone explicitly getting sick, but that someone could.
I believe the article’s logic is if a raw pork chop at room temperature was left in the sun for 3 hours, brought inside, and left on the counter for a few hours; It too would be dangerous to eat. Both are food items, so sun tea must also be dangerous to consume because of germ growth. To be fair you can get sick from drinking old sun tea the same way you can get sick from drinking stale water. Cups are not fully germ free, so even a cup of plain water left out for too long will get cloudy eventually and go bad. But, in my opinion, I feel heating tea to the same temperature of cooked food is a poor analogical argument because the recommended cooking temperatures for food don’t really apply to tea, and killing germs is a result of both time and temperature. Here are my issues with the logic.
165°F (74°C) is the recommended temperature to kill most germs instantly. This is applied to cooking meat since it may only be cooked for a few minutes, but germs die at much lower temperatures over a longer period. This is the principle of pasteurization. Long and low. I’ve pasteurized, and 135°F (57°C) over 75 minutes will basically kill everything too. I once left a sun tea out on a 95°F day and measured the temperature after 3 hours, and it was 145°F. According to pasteurizing requirements, it’s good to go.
UV light is used as an antimicrobial in water purification. When ultraviolet photons enter a cell, the energy in them will permanently damage the DNA and kill almost all germs and viruses. Many high-end water purifiers will have a UV chamber that disinfects the water in less than 10 seconds. I believe most of those systems are UVC, but the UVA and UVB emitted by the sun will still fry a germ. It’s why we get sunburns. With 3% of the energy from the sun being UVA and UVB, it has to have some disinfecting ability within the sun tea. If I was left out in the sun for 3 hours in a 145°F bath of water, I think I would die too.
Most U.S. water systems use chlorine or some other disinfectant treatment to purify water. You can smell it when you pour a glass of water from the tap. The water is still chlorinated when it comes out of the tap, so the “dirty” tea leaves get a very light disinfecting wash when they first enter the pitcher full of water.
None of these concerns seems to be related to real-world infections or illnesses. The CDC article was all hypothetical and implied that it could happen, not that it ever has. And no other source can point to an actual example of someone getting sick from sun tea. Countless people get sick, and some die, from poor food handling all the time, but none of these articles about the dangers of sun tea could point to one instance of it actually happening.
To be fair If it’s been sitting in your refrigerator for a week, it may be time to toss it, but I think the best thing to do is treat sun tea like we treat syrups. Germ growth is exponential but it takes time. So it takes a little time to start going bad, but once it starts to go bad it goes really bad fast. Once you see any cloudiness, toss it. Use common sense. I make many syrups, which are the perfect environment for cultivating germs. A syrup will last around a week or 2 in the fridge, but once there is any cloudiness, it needs to be tossed as it is obvious germs are growing out of control. Again, I’m no doctor or microbiologist (I’m just some dummy who owns a drink website, and for 300 dollar bucks a year, you could do that too), so to play it safe, consult a professional before drinking sun tea, or eating, or drinking anything.
“The practice of making “sun tea” by steeping tea bags in a container of water in the sun may be of higher theoretical risk than brewing tea at higher temperatures because it provides an environment where bacteria are more likely to survive and multiply”
Feb 1996 Vol 96, #2 Epidemiology bulletin
My understanding is the CDC article is saying this kind of contamination is theoretically possible and something to be aware of. That’s fine for them to share. The issue seems to be that the general public read this and misread the word “possible” instead for “will defiantly kill you.” Use common sense and try not to go to extremes. I feel the main issue is don’t drink old sun tea the same way you wouldn’t drink old milk. Is it possible to get sick from sun tea? Yes, but is it probable? No, not if it is consumed in a reasonable amount of time.
The oldest recipe for the New York Sour comes from H. O. Byron’s 1884 Book “The Modern Bartenders’ Guide.” Although he refers to it as the “Continental Sour.” The Recipe is:
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 oz lemon Juice
2 oz whiskey or other liquor
Shake, strain, and dash the top with claret
Byron’s recipe is too dry to float wine on top so the wine would simply mix in. The next appearance of the continental sour is from George Kappeler’s 1895 book Modern American Drinks. His recipe is a bit more open and only describes it as a sour topped with red wine. Depending on how sweet the sour cocktail is it would be possible to float a dry red wine on top. His Recipe is:
Make a plain sour of the desired liquor and top off with claret
Claret is the British term for Bordeaux or a blended Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Not that it really matters. More importantly, the wine should be dry so that it will float on top of the sour. Also of interest is that the continental sour can be based on any sour with a float of wine. The preference seems to be toward whiskey, but the main quality is the addition of red wine at the end. This reminds me of the earliest versions of the Manhattan that could be any base spirit as long as it was mixed with Angostura bitters and sweet vermouth. Making these more of a style than a specific recipe. Within a decade, the Manhattan officially became just a whiskey cocktail, and by the early 1910s, the continental sour officially became just a whiskey cocktail along with its name changing to New York Sour.
The earliest use of the name New York Sour comes from the 1913 book “The Cocktail Book A Sideboard Manual for Gentlemen” by Fredrick Knowles. This is also a whiskey cocktail, but his recipe is impossible to float wine on top of because it has very little sugar. The recipe I am proving here is scaled to let the red wine float on top.
The Amaretto Sour was invented in the 1970s due to the popularity of the 1972 Francis Ford Coppola movie “The Godfather” The Amaretto Sour was never mentioned in the film. Still, Italian became vogue, and many new Disaronno cocktails were invented. Some of the oldest Amaretto Sour recipes are simply Disaronno and lemon juice. Most modern recipes contain Disaronno and lemon juice but add countless other ingredients trying to improve the 1970s classic. But most of these newer variations stink.
The classic recipe is delicious. It has a great lemon and cherry flavor without being too heavy or sweet. The top-ranking recipe on Google right now is amaretto, sweet and sour, and Sprite. It looks awful. The next best-looking one has five ingredients. Amaretto, bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup, egg whites, and It’s good, but it’s too much. Another one I saw had muddled orange slices in it. The Amaretto Sour has become a free for all. Many modern recipes are good, but give them a new name. It’s a different drink. Just because it shares two ingredients with another recipe doesn’t mean they are the same. Imagine ordering an Old Fashioned and someone brings you with whiskey, bitters, sprite, and mint. What is the point of naming something is the name means something unique to each person?
What Does The Amaretto Sour Tastes Like?
To answer my own question. Fantastic. It has a pleasant lemon cherry dessert flavor without being too sweet or sour. I resisted making one of these or trying it for many years because the combination did not sound like something I would like, but boy, was I wrong. If you have yet to try this cocktail, you must change that.
What Kind of Liqueur Is Amaretto?
Amaretto is almond liqueur. The taste is similar to marzipan or orgeat. A blend of bitter and sweet almonds that I have come to enjoy more the older I get. The taste of bitter almonds is closer to a cherry flavor than the nut flavor of sweet almonds. Almonds bought at the grocery store are all sweet almonds and do not have the characteristic nutty cherry flavor of bitter almonds. Amaretto is a nice blend of these flavors and an underused liqueur.
I am a professional recreating this historically significant recipe for experimentation and preservation of the recipe. Some ingredients can be dangerous if misused and can kill you. No illicit substances were used to make this; one should always consult a doctor before taking anything medicinal or making any changes.
Pure ethanol is highly flammable and explosive. Exercise great caution and care anytime you are working with dangerous items.
How Coca Wine Became Coca-Cola
French Wine Coca taste like Christmas mulled wine. Not just any mulled wine either but a really good one. I would describe the flavor of French Wine Coca as brown spices, sweet green leaf, and floral. Depending on the wine used, it can add fruit, citrus, earth, etc. Skys the limit with the wine used as John Pemberton never specified a type to use beyond “Red Wine.” This may sound different from what Coca-Cola tastes like, but I can see the similarities, having tasted the two.
French Wine Coca and Coca-Cola are made of subtle flavors, and it’s hard to differentiate between individual or primary flavors. Coca-cola is a blend of lemon, orange, nutmeg, coriander, cinnamon, vanilla, and orange blossom essential oils, and these flavors imitate the medicinal extract flavors in French Wine Coca before the wine is added. It’s not a one-to-one match, but the similarities are strong. One of the strongest flavors in French Wine Coca is the Coca Leaf Extract.
The two primary flavors of Coca-Cola are vanilla and coca leaf. Coca leaf extract has a warm sweet herbal tea-like flavor. People hike the Andes and describe chewing on the coca leaf as bitter, but when extracted with ethanol and then diluted, the taste is soft and sweet. When transforming French Wine Coca into Coca-Cola, Pemberton preserved the herbal medical flavors by using essential oils, using a sizeable amount of coca leaf extract, and replacing the wine flavor with more of a cream soda vanilla flavor.
About John Pemberton, The Creator Of Coca-Cola
John Pemberton was born July 8, 1831, in Knoxville, Georgia. In 1850 he earned his medical degree from the now-defunct Southern Botanico-Medical College of Georgia. Pemberton was a Lieutenant Colonel for the former Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. After being wounded in the Battle of Columbus, Pemberton eventually became addicted to opiates and tried to cure his morphine addiction with stimulants. Returning from the war, Pemberton opened a pharmacy in Atlanta, Georgia. One of the medicinal drinks he sold was John Pemberton’s French Wine Coca, his version of the popular French Coca Wine, Vin Mariani. Pemberton’s French Wine Coca was sold as a cure-all panacea since it contained many different medicines.
In 1886 Atlanta enacted local alcohol prohibition, and Pemberton was forced to remove the wine from his French Wine Coca. He removed most of the medicines from the drink, except for the coca leaf extract, and set to make a new drink. He combined lemon, orange, nutmeg, coriander, cinnamon, vanilla, and orange blossom oils to create a new drink reminiscent of his French Wine Coca, and in doing so, he invented the “Cola” flavor. Unfortunately, Pemberton would not live to see Coca-Cola’s success. He soon after became sick with stomach cancer and sold the recipe to Asa Candler to pay for his painkiller addiction. John Pemberton died on August 16, 1888, at 57.
Imitation Coca Leaf Extract
Coca leaf is illegal where I live, but you can make imitation coca leaf extract with yerba mate and bay leaf. I have heard of using the ratio of yerba mate to bay leaf is 2/3 yerba mate with 1/3 bay leaf by weight. The extract is a 2:1 ratio of ethanol to plant. So for 120 grams of ethanol, use 60 grams of plant material. The 60 grams of plant material will comprise 40 grams of yerba mate with 20 grams of bay leaf.
What Is B.S. Color?
One of the ingredients I couldn’t figure out was what “B.S Color” was. The best guesses I could come to was burnt sugar and beet sugar color. I was unsure which it was, so I left it out. Burnt sugar sounds highly probable, but in other parts of his book, he refers to that dye as Brown Carmel color. It would be odd for him to use a different name on this one recipe. Beet sugar sounds good too, but again, I can’t know for sure. Seeing that it is just dye and offers no flavor, I figured it was best not to guess and not include it.
American Soda Fountain Culture And Medicine in the 19th Century
19th-century soda fountains were above and beyond anything most could imagine today. Using many of the same tools American saloons used to create cocktails, soda fountain drinks were expertly crafted and creative drinks. Soda fountains were the domain of pharmacists, and how many Americans filled prescriptions. Remember, pharmacists are chemists with knowledge of how to extract medicine and flavors from any herb, bark, or leaf and access to some of the most exotic plants in the world. They were not limited to manufactured bottles of alcohol, and a 19th-century pharmacist could run circles around most bartenders. Its parallel evolution alongside the pharmaceutical soda fountain created the unique American-style saloon. Soda fountains were shaking drinks before bars were. Shaking drinks predates the United States and was a common method for doctors and pharmacists to mix medicines in the 17th century. Here is a 1690s recipe for a treatment that clears the lungs that uses harts-horn, soda water, lemon juice, and syrup and is prepared by shaking. Not to say they invented the Boston Shaker, but the technique well predates American bars. The catalyst for this rapid evolution of bars and soda fountains was the invention of mechanically and locally manufactured carbonated water.
Sparkling mineral water was considered a healthy drink for its mineral content and alluring natural carbonation. But it could only be bottled at the source, and shipping was expensive. Even artificially manufactured soda water from companies like Schweppes was still costly to ship. That changed in 1832 when John Matthews invented a tank small enough to economically make soda water and fit under a bar. In just a few years, hundreds of his tanks were in New York alone. Pharmacies became a great place to get a refreshing medicated drink. Opium and chocolate were a popular combination. Absinthe originated as tapeworm medication. Angostura bitters were used to “clean the blood,” malaria, etc. Gin began as a kidney medication. Juniper berry extract is still used today for regulating renal function. Taverns and soda fountains shared many similarities and influenced each other over the next few decades. Pharmaceutical extracts became common at the bar, and cocktail tools and techniques became common at soda fountains. Soda fountains and bars found themselves in competition for patrons. Bars got you drunk, and soda fountains got you high.
However, things started to get out of hand toward the end of the 19th century. America’s drug and alcohol problems got severe. The temperance movement was gaining speed, and the federal government took notice of soda shops getting people hooked on narcotics. In 1906 the Pure Food and Drug Act was passed, and the FDA was created, with its first job being the removal of narcotics in everyday food and drinks. January 16, 1919, the 18th Amendment was ratified, and recreational drinking was made illegal in the US. The passing of the Pure Food and Drug Act in 1906 killed the classic soda fountain. Pharmacists no longer profited from sodas since they could no longer add medication to their drinks, and pills were becoming more and more mass-produced. Pills were easier to sell with higher profit margins, so the soda fountains businesses were sold, and the decline began. Thus ending the classic soda fountain era. For more information, please check out Darcy O’Neil’s book “Fix the Pumps.”
At its most basic, all one does when mixing a drink is combine two or more ingredients. But provide the same ingredients to different people with varying skill levels and experience, and you will get completely different results. The results are a combination of the quality of the ingredients, the technique, and the skill of the individual mixing a drink. I hope this post provides insight into how drinks are constructed and the techniques and tools used.
The 5 Different Methods To Mix A Drink.
After having mixed drinks for over a decade, writing a mobile cocktail app, and gathering hundreds upon hundreds of recipes for a website, I have concluded that five primary methods of mixing are most frequently used:
Tiki Dirty Pour
The five above are the most common methods and will be 95% of the drinks you make. The eight listed below are less common but still worth knowing and are usually used in specific styles of cocktails or occasions.
There are many variations within these. For example, in my app Stirring has a 1). Neat stir, 2). Neat stir over ice, 3). Neat stir over crushed ice, and 4). Soda water topped neat stir. Shake has 14 variations. But the primary mixing method is still to stir or shake. I will go ahead and describe each in more detail below.
Shaking is one of the most common methods of mixing a drink, Stirring being the other. Shaking and stirring account for around 80% of the drinks you will make. While shaking is not difficult, performing the correct rhythm and timing instinctually takes time. The rhythm is dictated by how fast you shake and the size of the shaker used. A 500 mL cobbler shaker has a different rhythm than an 830 mL Boston shaker. Switching to an other type of shaker is hard if it’s different from the one you typically use. It can be done, but it doesn’t feel good. I’ll talk more about tools and techniques in their sections below.
The main point of shaking instead of stirring is to provide a creamier texture. Thats it. This is also referred to as softening the drink. Some drinks taste better flat and still, while others taste better soft and creamy. A martini or negroni with a creamy texture would be weird, so those are stirred, but a sidecar or margarita with a creamier texture is terrific, so those are shaken. Shaking is always used for drinks with egg whites and dairy mixed in. It is the only way to foam egg whites and fluff heavy cream. It is very often used for mixing drinks with citrus. Sours usually taste better with a creamier texture. An exception would be the crustas or oyster bay which are stirred. If you get into 19th-century style sodas, the syrups are often shaken before mixing in soda water to create foam.
Stirring is one of the other most common methods of mixing a drink, Shaking being the other. Stirring and shaking account for around 80% of the drinks you will make. Stiring is used to create a perfectly still drink free of air. Drinks like martinis are best cold and flat, so those are stirred. Usually old fashion drinks that are all spirit, liqueur, or aperitif are mixed.
3). Tiki Dirty Pour
Also called dirty dumping this method involves adding a scoop of crushed ice to a shaker. Shaking the drink for 5 to 8 seconds and then pouring the whole thing, Ice and all, into a glass. No strainers or double strainers are used here. What is in the shaker goes into the glass. I have come to like this method over the last few years. It adds a lot of air, dilution, and fun little crushed ice to drinks. This method works well for very boozy beverages as it softens the high levels of alcohol. Tiki drinks are known for being boozy, so i can see how this method evolved out of those bars. I’ve made long islands using this that are fantastic
5). Simple Combination
This is used for making large punches and combines all the ingredients in a large container. This works well for drinks like the planter’s punch or soju cocktails, where the ingredients are mixed, set aside, and people serve themselves throughout the night. The single-serve version of this is built-in glass
This is simply for drinks that it doesn’t make sense to shake or stir in one glass to pour into another. The drink doesn’t need the air of shaking or the stillness of stirring, so it would be silly to use one of the tools to build it. The Mimosa is a great example of this. Those are only made in the glass they will be served in. The Rickey and Gin and Tonic are good examples of this too.
Blended drinks are drinks made in a blender. Unheard of in traditional bars, the blender is a staple of the tiki-style bar and the tool used to make delicious slushy drinks. If you want to make frozen margaritas or scorpions, you must have a blender. Alternatively, you can get an ice shaver and shake it with a scoop of shaved ice to get the same effect.
Swizzling is a mixing method where you quickly whisk the drink with a swizzle stick. The swizzle stick is a branch from the swizzle bush that grows in the Caribbean. Place the long end of the swizzle stick between your palms and rotate the shaft very quickly between your palms. It’s an excellent way to give the texture and air of a shake if you don’t have a shaker. If you own a shaker, swizzling is unnecessary, as the final result is the same. But it does look cool.
Infusion is the process of disolving oil and water-soluble flavors in alcohol. Alcohol is an excellent solvent because it bonds to both water and oil and, if done correctly, can emulsify oil in water too. Infusions are done by soaking plants in high-proof alcohol and letting the alcohol extract/bond to the desirable flavors or aromas of the plant. The soaking takes at least 24 hours and up to a week, depending on the hardness of the plant and the size of the plant bits. You’ll use this if you make ingredients like bitters, liqueurs, and infused spirits or make old-fashioned drinks like glögg or cherry bounce. Infusions are still very common in syrups.
One way to bypass the long soaking time is to use steam-distilled essential oils mixed with high-proof alcohol. I say steam distilled because using solvent-extracted essential oils is not advisable. This is also a more precise way of making infusions because it’s better measured and controlled. So instead of adding lemon peels to alcohol and letting them soak for a day or two, one can add 1 mL of lemon essential oil to 30 mLs of alcohol and instantly make lemon extract, which can be added to lemon syrup or to make lemon vodka.
Stove-top made cocktails are drinks heated over a stove and served warm. You’ll only find these in the wintertime when people want warm drinks. Technically any drink can be served warm, but it’s usually winter drinks that get heated and served for the holidays. Drinks include mulled wine, hot chocolate, hot ale flips, hot toddies, etc. The mistake most people make when making heated drinks is cooking the drink too long. It’s wine, not pork shoulder. This long and slow method is a product of the 1970s and the popularity of the Crock-Pot. When the Crock-Pot came to market, the manufacturer published a recipe book to show users what their new kitchen tool could do. Regular recipes were converted to recipes that could be assembled in the morning and cooked all day to be ready at night. Mulled wine was given the Crock-Pot treatment and never recovered in the USA. The best way to heat drinks is to prepare them ahead of time and heat them right before serving.
10). Milk Clarification
Milk Clarification is another very old technique that has recently become popular over the last few years. Check out my Benjamin Franklin English Milk Punch recipe for an in-depth breakdown of how milk clarification works. The process uses curdled milk casein protein to join together around particles in the drink and then trap the particles. The remaining liquid is completely clear once the curdled casin is filtered out. The problem with reviving this cocktail style is that the milk we buy today differs from the milk purchased in the 18th century. Today, milk is homogenized and pasteurized, all things that inhibit the cheese-making process, which means making clarified cocktails is much more challenging than 200 years ago when raw milk was used. Again read my clarified milk punch recipe to learn how to clarify cocktails and overcome some of these issues with modern milk.
11). Pousse Café
Pousse Café is layering a drink based on the gravity of each ingredient to form clean separations between them. Pousse Café looks neat and is done for effect and looks rather than improving the taste. What it means to separate the ingredients based on gravity is to pour the heaviest/densest ingredients first and the less dense ingredients on top. The three factors to consider when determining an ingredient’s gravity are alcohol, water, and sugar. Sugar is the heaviest of the three, with water next and alcohol last. An ingredient that is higher in sugar will sit lower than one that has less sugar, and an ingredient that is higher in alcohol will sit higher than one that has less alcohol. For example, the Duck Fart Shot, originally named the IRA, is first Kahlúa, Irish cream, and whiskey last. Kahlúa has the most sugar, so it sits the lowest; Irish cream has less sugar than Kahlúa but more than whiskey, so it goes next, and lastly, whiskey since it has no sugar and the most alcohol.
The trick to layering is to pour as slowly and gently as possible. This causes the least amount of disturbance between the two layers. This is easier said than done. Everyone uses a spoon to help do this. Place a spoon at the top of the highest layer and pour as closely and slowly as you reasonably can into the spoon. This makes it so the top layer is as undisturbed as possible while pouring in the next layer.
This is an outdated colonial-era technique you will never see in a bar today, but if you have the right tools, you can make some enjoyable drinks. A toddy rod and flipping glass were tools for making hot toddies and flips in the 18th century. Also called a loggerhead, the toddy rod is a metal rod with a large head a tavern owner could keep in the fireplace to make warm drinks. Running a stove was expensive and took time to heat up and cool down. It was unknown if someone would even order a hot drink, too, so tavern owners would instead place several toddy rods in the fireplace and use one to heat a drink if a customer requested a warm drink.
Because drinks would boil and expand when a hot toddy rod was dunked in a large glass called a toddy glass was used to prepare the drink. These toddy glasses are long gone now, but a large Oktoberfest glass beer stein works well. The toddy rod also doesn’t make the drink hot like a stove or kettle. It has this unique effect of caramelizing and steam-heating the drink. The rod is usually so hot that a thin vapor forms around it, and the drink is heated with steam. It has a different taste from stove-heated drinks. Check out this list here for a list of what beers taste suitable heated and which do not. I’ve ruined many good meals and flips by using a beer that tastes awful warm.
13). Bomb Shot
The bomb shot is a drink served as a half-filled pint glass and a separate shot of alcohol. The pint glass is typically half filled with beer, but other low or no-ABV drinks also work. The shot glass has a higher ABV spirit or liqueur in it, and the shot glass is dropped into the pint glass and the whole drink is consumed at once. Good examples of this style of drink are the Irish Car Bomb, Sake Bomb, and Jägerbomb. As you can see bomb is usually in the drink’s title too.
Shaking Techniques. (The Normal Ones.)
Everyone has their own preferred shaking techniques and style of shaker. And the truth is there is no one right way, just the best way for you. Now some methods are more effective than others in getting specific results. These are the three most common shaking techniques you will see.
1). Standard Shake With Ice
This is your standard vanilla shake with a scoop of ice that everyone does. It works well and produces excellent drinks, and it was the shake I did for over a decade. Simply build your drink in one tin (usually the smaller one, but it doesn’t matter.) and a scoop of ice into the other tin, pour the drink into the tin with ice, seal it, and shake until it’s properly aerated and chilled. Some recommend shaking for 20 seconds, but it depends on how hard you shake. I shake the drink very hard, and within 6 seconds, it’s done. Any more than that and i would be wasting my time. I also happen to be a male with a bit of upper body strength so that I can do that, but when I see others who don’t shake as hard as I do make a drink it takes a little longer. What you are looking for when you shake this way is to feel how cold the tin gets. You’re done shaking this way when the tin gets cold. Not so cold it frost, and your fingers stick to it, but just the right amount of cold. Ice is typically stored at 0°F/-17°C. So if you shake it long enough, the drink will get sub-freezing, which doesn’t make for a good drink. It will be over-diluted and too cold, so learn to feel when the drink is right before freezing. You’ll know how long you should shake based on how you shake.
2). Dry Shake and Reverse Dry Shake
A popular technique for egg white drinks, I feel this shaking method has become obsolete and is surpassed by the next one I will show you. I no longer use this one, but I will tell you how it works. The idea is to increase the time you shake the drink by first shaking it without ice to build a big foamy head and then shaking it with ice to cool it. The reverse dry shake flips the order by shaking with ice, removing the ice and adding the egg whites, then shaking without ice to build a big foamy head. This has been the go-to egg white shaking technique for the last 15 to 20 years, but another shaking technique has come to light that completely blows this method out of the water.
3). Saxe Soda Shake/Whip Shake
Often called a whip shake today, this technique was invented by Deforest Saxe in the 1880s at his soda fountain in Chicago. The Saxe soda shake technique only adds 1 or 2 ice cubes to the shaker and shakes them until they fully dissolve. The main advantage of this shake is it makes impressive and easy foam from egg whites. Using this technique, a Ramos gin fizz is no more complicated than a margarita. If you worry about the cooling capacity of this shake, keep in mind that ice is stored well below freezing, so two fully melted ice cubes are enough to cool the drink to just above freezing. The other advantage of this shake is it controls and limits dilution. Drinks taste better because they have less water. There is a very noticeable flavor and texture difference between the cocktails I make with the Saxe soda shake/whip shake and the standard shake. I use this shake for everything now, and I have tried to shout about how great it is from the mountains, but I have learned it is only for some.
After forcing many people to try the Saxe shaking method, I noticed it only worked well for people who shook hard, like me. The shaking took too long for them, and the dilution was not much better than their more softly shaken drink. The texture was nowhere near as good, but that’s simply an issue with not shaking hard. (I’m not talking about the Japanese hard shake, just how intensely one shakes.) The weakness of this technique is it works best with a Boston shaker and requires an aggressive hard shake. If you’re not shaking hard or you use a cobbler shaker, then it’s a difficult technique to get good results from. It is more advantageous for these individuals to continue doing the standard shake, but the Saxe soda shake is still the absolute best technique for making great foam for egg white cocktails.
3). Tiki Dirty Pour
The Tiki Dirty Pour is a fantastic shaking technique that is useful beyond just tiki drinks. The Tiki Dirty Pour is a pouring technique where you pour the entire contents of the shaker. The drink and ice are both poured into the serving glass. You do not use a strainer with this method. It’s fast and easy, and the same ice you shook with is the same ice that goes into the glass. I’ve noticed this shake works very well with softening boozy drinks. Perhaps this is why it is a go-to shake in the tiki world, as many tiki cocktails are very boozy. A Zombie, which is usually loaded with booze, is delicious and refreshing. I used this technique for Long Island, and they came out amazing. Even my wife, who mostly only drinks hard seltzers, likes my Long Island Iced Tea when I make it using a tiki dirty pour. I like using crushed ice, to begin with, but non-crushed ice works too. Give this a shot and see for yourself. Take a shaken drink that is usually too boozy for you and make it using this method, and I bet it will be much improved.
The Tools Used To Make Cocktails.
SHAKERS & MIXING GLASS
The most common shaker and the best one. It’s easy to open and close, it can make drinks fast, and they tend to be large, so they have a lot of volumes for multiple drinks and pound the hell out of a drink. It’s easy to clean, and no small parts to lose. They are the classic simple shaker, and they work great. Some are half glass and half metal. Dont buy those. Only get the all-metal ones.
In the mid-1800s, the Boston Shaker was the shaker of choice, but that didn’t stop folks from trying to build a better one. Invented by Edward Hauck in 1884, the Cobbler shaker was an improved shaker design by having a built-in strainer on the top. The cobbler shaker is popular, but I prefer the Boston shaker. The cobbler can be difficult to separate when it gets cold, and the tip can easily get lost. That said, try both and see which you prefer.
Soon after the invention of the Boston shaker everyone was trying to improve the design and build a better shaker. The first obvious problem was that half of the shaker was glass, and glass could break, so the Parisian was made out of all metal. The second issue is the finickiness of the seal between the two cups. The Parisian Shaker got a simplified connection, and out of fixing these two improvements, the Parisian Shaker was born. That being said, I have never seen anyone use one of these. Just get an all-metal Boston shaker instead.
The mixing glass is a nice fancy tool for making still clean looking drinks. It adds no bubbles like the shaker and is used for many old-fashioned cocktails. But it’s not necessary. A regular pint glass works too, but a pint glass is more challenging to stir elegantly in. The wide straight sides of the mixing glass make it easier to stir a drink without the spoon banging all over the place.
The bell jigger is the original jigger, and its design is based on the 2 oz Sherry wine glass. In many of the early cocktail books, they never mention a jigger measurement because the jigger did not exist yet. The measurement commonly used in these older books is a wine glass (2 oz) or a half wine glass (1 oz). The metal bell jigger was an improved measuring tool since it had both a wine glass side and a half wine glass side and would not break when dropped.
Even though this is called a Japanese jigger, it was not invented in Japan. It was designed by Cornelius Dungan in 1893 from Chicago, Illinois, as an improvement to the bell jigger. Cornelius found the long narrow cone design easier to use, with fewer spills and more straightforward fractional measurements. And he was right. This is arguably the best jigger. While not as cute as a bell jigger, it is functionally better. It is called a Japanese jigger because, after WWII, American-style bars started popping up all over Japan to service the American troops stationed there. Japanese bartenders recognized how good this jigger style was and refused to use any other. Fast forward to the late 90s, and the American cocktail renaissance is just beginning, and American bartenders visiting Japan rediscover this old jigger design and bring it back to the USA.
Honestly, there is nothing good I can say about the American jigger. Most are flimsy, and they spill easily. If you own one, do yourself a favor, toss it out, and buy a Japanese jigger. This design came from crummy mass production and manufacturers racing to the bottom to make a cheaper Japanese-style jigger. The one in the photo here is an excellent American jigger, and it still spills everywhere just because a shallow bowl with a wide top is difficult to control. I hate this jigger.
The measuring jigger is a single large cup with all the individual units written on it like a measuring cup. It may be my lack of experience with this one, but I find them very slow since I can’t eyeball any of the measurements. I can easily fill a 1 oz jigger halfway and figure I have 1/2 an oz, but I have to look at the lines every time with the measuring jigger. Again it is probably just me, as I have seen some people who are very fast with these.
The flat muddler was initially named the toddy stick and used more for cracking spices than pressing mint leaves. The flat muddler is best used for breaking up sugar cubes or pressing herbs. Use it when you want to avoid pulverizing the item being muddled.
The Grinder muddler is a sharp variation of the flat muddler best used for pulverizing fruit in a glass. The teeth nicely grab onto the lime wedge and smash its rigid body.
Designed in 1892 by William Wright, the Hawthorne strainer was essentially a julep strainer with a large metal coil running around the periphery of it. On the patent, It was said to be “designed to instantly fit any glass.” Wright sold and assigned the patent to Dennis P. Sullivan, who owned the Hawthorne Cafe in Boston, Massachusetts. Sullivan began manufacturing and selling the strainers around the city, and they all advertised the name of his bar on them. Thus this improved cocktail strainer became known as the Hawthorne Strainer.
The first cocktail strainers were standard English tea-straining spoons. During the early days of bartending the craft was still in its infancy, and bartenders used the available tools. The design of the Julep strainer mostly stayed the same as the original tea strainer other than getting larger. The Julep strainer is odd to use with a shaker and works best with a mixing glass. It works best at holding back large clumps of solid ice and not the broken-up fragments of a shaker.
Double/Fine Mesh Strainer
The double strainer is a handy strainer and one you will use all the time. It’s used to catch all the little shards of ice that pass by your main strainer after shaking. I recently started using a strainerless shaking technique that works well for me called the Saxe soda shake, so i don’t use my double strainer much anymore. I will still use it if I shake it with mint or fruit to avoid getting into the drink, but my once most used item now goes mostly unused.
The bar spoon was designed to be a better drink mixing spoon. It had a long stem to let the bartender stir and reach deep into tall glasses without sticking your fingers into it, which is gross to see someone do and makes it worth getting a bar spoon. It is also equally weighted on each side to have a controlled and balanced stir. The typical measurement of the bowl of the bar spoon is one teaspoon (5 mls)
Everyone knows what a peeler is and most likely has one, but in the case of cocktails, you will use this to get a peel of citrus as a garnish. Whether it is an orange peel in an old fashion or a lemon peel in a Holland house, a good peeler will make your job much easier.
Juicing is a pain in the butt and the part of making drinks I dislike the most. Juicers come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s a matter of getting the kind that fits your needs. A small hand-squeezed juice press is suitable for a drink or two. A citrus press is good if you throw parties and make many drinks periodically. And an electric juicer is good if you make a lot of drinks every day. A few brands also sell good bottles of lemon or lime juice that are cost-effective. While they cost less and taste good, they are never as good as freshly squeezed juice. Also, a juicer is only suitable for juicing citrus. If you want to juice other fruit, you must blend it first and then strain it.
The blender is a fantastic bar tool but lives entirely in the world of tiki. You’ll never see a blender at an old fashion bar, but they are the only way to make a perfectly slushy drink. If you want to mix cold fats or oils into a drink, that must be done with a blender, and blended drinks help hide large amounts of booze. The only downside to them is they are very loud. One trick to get around this is to shake it with shaved ice. This gives you the same slushy texture without the noise.
The swizzle stick is pointless when you have a shaker, as the result is the same. The swizzle stick comes from a Caribbean plant named quararibea turbinata, or the Swizzlestick tree. The branches grow together along the trunk, and if you cut the young tree and trim these branches, you get a swizzle stick. Don’t buy a natural wooden swizzle stick. They are super expensive, can break, and are more of a novelty item. If you want one, get a metal one. They cost the same as an imported wooden one and last forever. Unless you live in the Caribbean, having a wooden swizzle stick makes no sense.
Toddy Rod & Flipping Glass
You’ll never see this at any bar, and almost no one has ever heard of a toddy rod and flipping glass. A staple of taverns in colonial America, the toddy rod was used to heat drinks in bars where it was too expensive to run a stove. The toddy rod was used for flipping beers as they started to go flat, and the oversized flipping glass was used to hold a large amount of bubbles flipping released. This is an enjoyable tool, and I have used it much more than I ever thought. Also, this is not an actual vintage flipping glass. Those are long gone, but a large Oktoberfest glass beer stein works well.
What You Are Controlling When You Make A Drink.
Many things are going on when you make a drink, but the two most significant factors that contribute to the taste of a drink are temperature and dilution. A little dilution is essential for softening the drink, but too much makes the drink flat and lifeless. The other is temperature; often, the goal is to make the drink as cold and close to freezing as possible I don’t subscribe to this and personally find cool but not freezing drinks more desirable. It also depends on the drink, where I am, and what I am doing. Most drinks are over-diluted. The current top-ranking post on how to shake recommends using as much ice as possible to get the coldest drink possible. This is terrible advice. Your goal shouldn’t be to make the coldest watery drink possible. The colder a drink gets, the harder it is to taste, so cool the drink, but don’t get it so close to freezing that it’s bland. It also depends on the environment. An ice-cold tiki drink on the beach sounds great, but drinks like the Manhattan benefit from being a little less cold.
This may seem weird, but I have weighed my drinks before and after and found that adding water at 25% of the drink’s initial volume results in a nicely diluted drink. So, for example, if the ingredients come out to 4 oz (120 ml), then 1 oz (30 ml) of dilution is good. Luckily most standard ice cubes are 1/2 oz (15 ml). For any drink less than 4 oz, I use one cube. I’ll use two cubes for any drink between 4 to 6 oz. This isn’t a hard and fast rule, but it works for me.
Tips For Making Great Drinks.
Do nothing useless. This quote is from “The Book of the Five Rings”, but it applies to everything and mixing drinks is no exception. Don’t jiggle your arms all weirdly or hold stuff goofy. Sure, it looks cool and helps bring in tips, but if you want to make great drinks, then focus on making great drinks, not showmanship.
Get a big all-metal Boston shaker. Thats it. That’s the only shaker to buy. It’s not a matter of preference; They work better. The Boston shaker is the best, and drinks mix better in larger shakers than in smaller shakers. Your standard Boston tins are 18 and 28-oz cups. You can buy a cobbler or Parisian shaker if you want, but plan to buy a Boston shaker later once you realize the other shakers stink or you lose the cobbler’s cap.
Shake the hell out of the drink. A strong hard shake will make a better-tasting drink than a gentle shake.
Don’t over-ice a drink. A drink should be cool and chilled, but it doesn’t have to be freezing. Too much ice makes for a watery flat drink, and drinks last only a short time. I once discussed this with someone who argued that I don’t put enough ice because after 10- 15 minutes the drink will warm up too much. A drink lasts only a few minutes and should be long gone by then, but a drink with too much ice is terrible from the start. Life isn’t perfect and is full of trade-offs. So what would you rather have? A flat, watery drink that is cold for a long time, or a great drink that isn’t freezing after 5 minutes?
Always use fresh cold ice. Thats all.
If you’re not sure what someone likes, ask them. Every drink has countless variations, and the best-made drink is the one each person likes. Some people want different things, and that’s fine. And the truth is no one cares what your opinion is on how to make the best martini or old fashioned. This leads to my final opinion.
Ignore anyone who tells you there is a right or wrong way to make something. Most people fall into this trap with something they get passionate about. This is the best way to make x, or I have the ultimate technique. I do this too, so ignore me when I make those claims.* It’s not to say the method or recipe they offer isn’t excellent at what it does, but it’s objectively not the end all be all. There are more and less effective ways to accomplish a goal, but nothing is ever purely right or wrong. Find the most effective strategy for you and refine it. Learn what you can from the “experts,” but don’t be fooled into thinking they hold all the answers. Experts are ordinary people like you and me who just happened to practice a skill longer than others. *(Although, in my defense, I do it intentionally to get attention and clickbait. No one clicks on an article titled “I found a very effective technique for mixing egg cocktails that has a few shortcomings but is better than most current solutions, in my opinion.” But folks love “I have the best shaking technique you’ve never heard of!” regardless of the title, you will still learn something useful.)
I don’t know, but I’ve been told. Uranium ore is worth more than gold, and this drink is the perfect refresher while wandering the wasteland. Whether you are a lone wanderer or a sole survivor, Quantum will replenish your health and even give you a few stat boosts.
This differs from the official Bethesda Nuka-Cola Quantum recipe from their cookbook, but I like mine better. Mine is also much easier to make. For my recipe, I chose blue raspberry and citrus flavors. It tastes like a blue Jolly Rancher and is wonderful. I have a link to their book below if you want the official recipe.
In fallout lore, Rex Meacham invented Nuka Cola Quantum in 2076, a year before the Great War. While working for Nuka-Cola in weapons research, Rex discovered that the radioactive isotope strontium-90 made a great food additive and gave off a gentle blue glow.