The Only 5 Cocktail Accessories You Actually Need

If you’re interested in becoming your own bartender at home, you might start Googling for the tools you’ll need to start up. Then you might come across a lot of words you’ve never heard of before, and maybe some accessories that get you wondering, “Do I really need that?”. The answer is no, probably not.  

So here’s a list of what you really need to make cocktails at home. 

shaker with lid off

This is an obvious one, but a shaker is essential when it comes to making drinks at home. There is no better, or easier way to integrate all the complex flavours of your drink than vigorously shaking them together. A shaker also serves to cool your cocktail, so it’s important that if you’re looking for only a few accessories for your home bar, the cocktail shaker is one of them.

If you’re unsure on which shaker to use, we have another blog post on the varying types, as well as alternatives for shaking your cocktails with items found in your home! But if you’re looking to buy a cocktail shaker, you can find one for sale on our online shop.  

You can find the cocktail shaker blog post here: How to choose a cocktail shaker – Fruity Tipples premium cocktail Liqueurs 

A picture containing cup Description automatically generated

Or as us normal folk would know it as, a spirit measurer. If you don’t already have one of these at home, they’re a shot measurer divided into two sides, one which measures out 4 cL (or 40 mL), and the smaller side which measures 2 cL (or 20 mL) of liquid. They come in really handy for accurately pouring out small measures you might not find on that jug in your cupboard, and the good news is they’re easy to get a hold of and can be as inexpensive or fancy as you’d like.  

muddler

Another strange name that you may never have come across, but it essentially does the same thing as a pestle. It serves to release the flavour of ingredients like fruit, herbs, and spices, usually in the bottom of the cocktail shaker. Of course, if you don’t feel like buying one, there are other alternatives you could use that may already be lying around in your house, such as: a pestle and mortar, a wooden spoon, or a wooden rolling pin. If you plan on muddling some of your cocktail ingredients together, it’s important to note that you don’t just go all out and mash your ingredients to a paste, the point of muddling is to gently coax the flavours out, not beat them to a pulp.  

To do this, take whichever utensil you’ve decided on, and gently press it down onto your ingredients in the bottom of your shaker, twisting it once in both directions, and repeat this motion several times. Not all cocktails require their ingredients to be muddled, but the most common ones are the Mojito and the Old Fashioned.  

cocktail strainer

You’ll need some kind of strainer to prevent ice, or any other more chunky ingredients from getting into the finished drink. If you have a three piece shaker, like the ones included in the Fruity Tipples cocktail kits, then you won’t have to worry about a strainer as they come built-in to the lid. However, if you have a two piece shaker or are using a homemade equivalent, then it might be a good idea to use a strainer to make sure you don’t end up with a lumpy cocktail. If you don’t want to buy a strainer specifically for cocktails, then use what you have in the house, whether that be a sieve, or any other mesh strainer you have available. 

bar spoon

These spoons are used by bartenders to both mix and layer components of a cocktail. They’re known for being long, with twisted handles which allow a steady and firm grip. The length allows the spoon to easily reach the bottom of the shaker, or glass, ensuring that all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, and not settling at the bottom. Spoons such as these can be bought online easily, but if you’re desperate to make a cocktail before it arrives, just find any spoon you have that has a long enough handle to reach the bottom of your glass. 

These are just the basics for those who want to try making some cocktails at home for fun; if you’re wanting to go the extra distance to make your own fancy bar at home, there are plenty of other bar accessories you can purchase. But if you’re just starting out, there’s no reason you have to spend a lot of money on it, get creative and use what you already have to start mixing, shaking, and most importantly: drinking! 

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