Four Golden Rules Of Cocktail Making

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Posted: 17/05/2023

From the perfect amount of ice to the ingredients that should never be shaken, let the Hunter & Barrel beverage team lead the way for the perfect cocktail! 

The Hunter & Barrel beverage team in our Dubai bars and Abu Dhabi bars are masters of mixology. Read on for their top tips on creating the barrel-aged cocktails and craft beverages we’re famous for. 

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It’s All About The Alcohol 

A proper cocktail should not be a liquid pudding with a naughty twist. It should celebrate its booziness! As a rule of thumb, a cocktail is 50ml of the base spirit (that’s a double shot), plus a few sweet or sour extras. It’s easy to make a cocktail more sweet or sour, or dilute it; it’s harder to make it unsweet or unsour and undilute. A lot of bartenders pour the alcohol into the shaker last for this reason.

Ice, Ice Baby

Ice serves a dual purpose in cocktails, chilling the drink as well as providing a little (but not too much) dilution. Contrary to popular belief, using too little ice means it melts much quicker, resulting in insufficient chilling and too much dilution. The ice should always poke above the alcohol line in the shaker or glass.

A Matter Of Taste

A good bartender doesn’t guess they’ve mixed you the perfect drink. They taste it, then taste it again. They are aiming not for something that makes your eyes pop on the first sip, but something you’re still savouring in the last. This requires a harmonious blend of flavours, so neither sweetness, nor sourness, nor bitterness dominates, and that means tasting at every stage of preparation.

Shaken Or Stirred?

Despite what James Bond will tell you, only cocktails containing fruit juices require a shaker. Aromatic cocktails, which are those containing only alcoholic ingredients, should be stirred with ice, which results in even dilution and a smoother texture. Those containing citrus fruit, cream, egg, coffee or any other non-alcoholic ingredients should be shaken, which results in more amalgamation, more dilution and a slightly altered texture.

Sample signature Hunter & Barrel cocktails and craft beverages and save up to 35% at the 3 O’Clock Beverage Club, which takes place every day from 3pm to 7pm at Hunter & Barrel Vida Hills, Dubai, and Yas Bay Waterfront, Abu Dhabi.

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