Pro Tips To Make Your Cocktails Better!

Cocktails can be a great addition to your special occasions, and we often try creating the magical potion at home yet fail disastrously. A cocktail is not just mixing some ingredients but includes techniques and mixology skills. If you want to excel in making cocktails, continue reading, as I have some pro tips to make your cocktail better. 

Pro Tips To Make Your Cocktails Better!

Some of the best tips to make your cocktail better are 

  • Use fresh ingredients
  • Choose the best quality alcohol
  • Use cocktail equipment and add bitters
  • Play with flavor enhancers
  • Add different shapes of ice
  • Keep The Drink Simple
  • Make A Sample First

These pro tips may look very simple, but trust me, they can elevate the flavors and give you a very cool drink to enjoy. Making cocktails may not be your ideal weekend plan, but trust me; it is a soothing and relaxing way to spend your weekend. 

So, without further ado, let us learn these fantastic tips to make our cocktail party successful at home. This whole conversation will help you understand all the basics of cocktail making. Keep on reading!

Why Doesn’t Your Cocktails Taste Good?

I know it cannot be very reassuring when your cocktail does not taste like the one at the bar. After adding all the ingredients and following the instructions, there still can be some gaps that can break the complete flavor and notes of your cocktail. Some of the main reasons are: 

1. The Muddling Game

muddling

Most of the cocktail drinks involve muddling of ingredients like lemon, mint leaves, and orange. The purpose of muddling is to extract the fresh juices that will add flavors to your cocktail. So make sure that you muddle the ingredients religiously. 

If you want your drink to have all the flavors mixed nicely, you must ensure that the first and most crucial step – muddling, is done well. A muddler is a long cylindrical tool that helps squeeze the liquid from raw ingredients like mint and lemon. You can use a great quality muddler for the same and extract all the juices out for the flavorful drink. 

2. Mixology 

The next issue that we always overlook is the mixing of the cocktail. One thing about cocktail making is the proper mixing of the ingredients. The adequate mixing of liquids and ingredients will make your drink taste better, so make sure you mix it well. 

Mixing the ingredients to make a cocktail is like an art. You have to know when to stir or shake the liquid. Also, many cocktail recipes have fruits like oranges or herbs like mints that add freshness, so one needs to ensure that these ingredients are well combined with the liquids.

It would be best if you also had clarity on when to mix the ingredients. From liquid to ice, adding them in sequence is very important, and it differs from cocktail to cocktail. 

That is why it is always essential to stir or shake the cocktail before serving. It ensures that each ingredient is blended correctly and complements each other. It is muddling the ingredients nicely and then adding the liquid to get the flavors to the fullest. 

3. Not Measuring Everything 

measuring

After spending so much time in the kitchen, I know we all think we are master chefs and don’t even bother to measure the ingredients. This is where we mess things up. Measuring the ingredients helps you to make a cocktail with a balanced flavor. 

Professional bartenders usually have jiggers that help them measure the quantity of the liquids. You can also use the same and make sure that you add the appropriate amount of portion. Jiggers come in different sizes. You can choose from the different sizes as per the requirement. 

If you have measuring spoons and cups, you can stick to the recipe precisely, which also helps prevent any ingredient from going to waste. So, whether it’s about maintaining the right flavor balance or ensuring accurate adherence to the recipe, using the proper tools, such as measuring cups, is essential for crafting an excellent cocktail.

4. Improperly Mixed 

This is a big blunder if you use the wrong liquids in your cocktail. Always make sure that you use drinks like syrup, alcohol, bitters, and other things in such a way that they complement each other. 

Also, if you add the wrong ingredients to the alcohol, the whole flavor will be bizarre as every alcohol has its taste, and upon mixing with ingredients, a new flavor comes out. Using components that do not pair well may ruin your cocktail. This also includes ice. You must know that different ice goes with different types of cocktails. 

5. Not Using Fresh Ingredients

fresh ing

Your cocktail will only taste nice if you use fresh ingredients. Stale ingredients will not add the required flavors and give unwanted notes, so your cocktail might not taste good. 

Ensure you get all the fresh ingredients, from mints to fruits to bitters and even alcohol. This will ensure that your cocktail possesses excellent new flavors. Using fresh ingredients also adds a very vibrant color to your cocktail. Using spoiled ingredients can also impact your health and make you sick. 

Before you start making the cocktail, go and get fresh ingredients. The freshness of the components will bring all the flavors out, and you will enjoy the same notes as served in the bars and restaurants. 

6. Ignoring Your Tastebuds

Now, this may sound different, but if you are one of those people who love trying different types of cocktails and experimenting with flavors, then be careful. Mixing and experimenting with cocktails that do not match your taste buds may ruin your experience. 

I prefer adding sweeteners to my drinks (extra sweeteners) as I enjoy the sweet notes in a cocktail. 

7. Don’t Underestimate The Ice

ice

Ice may not be the most important thing on your mind, but you should be very mindful. Different ice shapes and sizes will add a distinct note to your drinks. Firstly, use fresh ice because cocktails are best when served chilled. Fresh ice will keep the drinks cool and icy for a long time. 

Secondly, every drink deserves a specific type of ice. For instance, if making Manhattan, served in a lowball glass, giant ice cubes would be a perfect match. So, before you prepare any cocktail, ensure you have the proper ice for the drink. 

8. Amateur Use Of Tools

I know that we are not that cool bartenders who know how to shake and mix the drinks in the air. However, you must learn the essential use of the tools and equipment. 

Tools including measuring cups, a good shaker, a strainer, a juicer, and a stirrer are equally important. Trust me, using these tools will enhance your cocktail-making experience and make the whole cocktail-making process easier and your cocktail more flavorful. 

 What Makes A Perfect Cocktail?

cocktails

Cocktails are alcoholic drinks with other ingredients like spirits, juices, and syrup. Now, a perfect cocktail means that the dilution of all the components is done nicely.

A perfect cocktail will have the appropriate amount of liquids, and there will be some tension between the different elements. If you want your cocktail to taste excellent, read further and hack the best tips. 

How Do You Make Your Cocktails Better?

There are so many simple ways that can help you to make your cocktail precisely similar to the one served in your favorite bar. Follow these tips next time you are making cocktails and surprise your loved ones with similar flavors, like at the bar or a restaurant. For your convenience, I have listed some of the tips that can make your cocktail better. 

1. Fresh Ingredients 

fresh ingredients in jars

Using fresh ingredients in your cocktail is a must. New elements elevate the flavors and notes of your cocktail. On the other hand, if you use stale or spoiled ingredients, the flavors can be impacted and not in a good way. 

Whether you add herbs or fruits, ensure they are fresh and unspoiled. Using fresh ingredients will definitely make your cocktail taste better and fresher. Before making any cocktail, I confirm I have all the ingredients handy. I make an effort and get them fresh from the supermarket, especially the mints. 

2. Learn To Use Cocktail Equipment And Tools

Before you plan to make cocktails for your friends or even yourself, learn to use essential cocktail equipment and tools. This will ease your work and give you the best flavor. Even professional bartenders mention the importance of using cocktail equipment like jiggers, muddlers, and shakers. 

You can use strainers, cocktail shakers, stirrers, jiggers, or measuring equipment. You can quickly master these equipment and tools. All you have to do is learn the basics of the cocktail tools and then prepare your drinks and enjoy.

3. Select High-Quality Alcohol

alcohol

Now, the most important thing in any cocktail is alcohol. Make sure that you use high-quality alcohol. A good quality alcohol will make your drink more flavorful and rich. Alcohol is the main ingredient in any cocktail. Using high-quality alcohol will add depth and richness to the glass. 

4. Use Bitters 

If you want to enjoy a more flavorful cocktail, consider using bitters. Bitters are an alcoholic preparation with botanical matter to have a bittersweet flavor. Adding a few dashes of bitters will amplify the flavors and notes. They are readily available so that you can add them to your recipe. I am sure that you will love the flavors and enjoy your drink. 

5. Ice Matters

ice in the cocktails

After alcohol, the second important thing is ice. Many don’t care about the ice and usually throw whatever we have. Now, there are many types of ice, like cubes, crushed, nuggets, blocks, and many more. They all have some distinction in flavor, and if you know the basics of ice, then you know that some drinks call for a specific type of ice. For instance, if you want your cocktail to be slurpy, crushed ice will give you the right consistency. 

6. Flavor Enhancers Are Great

For someone like me who loves tropical fruity flavors, cocktails are a great way to enjoy them. Using flavor enhancers can be helpful, too. They not only elevate the flavors but the addition will add great texture and richness to your drink. So make sure you try some flavor enhancers and share your experience. 

7. Serve It Nicely

serve

Making the cocktail is not the only task, but serving them in the right way is important, too. Make sure that you serve the cocktails nicely. Use proper cocktail glasses and decorate with ingredients. A well-prepared cocktail should be well served; otherwise, you won’t justify the flavors. 

8. Balance The Flavors

Balancing the flavors in your drink is too important. Nobody wants their cocktail to be too sweet, sour, or bitter. So, to ensure the flavors are balanced, follow the instructions and measurements accurately. Balancing the flavors is like doing art. So, if you know how to do balance, then call yourself an artist. 

9. Keep The Drink Simple

simple

Less is always more. Try to complicate the flavors by adding only a few ingredients. Always remember to keep your cocktail simple and clean. This way, you can enjoy the authentic taste and avoid unwanted flavors. So try to keep your cocktails simple and enjoy the flavors and notes. 

10. Prefer The Classics

See, I know that the world of cocktails has so many new versions and variations. However, classic cocktail drinks like Martini, Daiquiri, Highball, Flip, and more exist. So, if you know these traditional cocktail recipes, it is enough to start making simple cocktails at home. Always go for these classic drinks when in doubt. They are very flavorful and decent to enjoy with friends and family. 

11. Stick To The Ratio

I know that you always make cocktails following your instincts. I have also told you the importance of measuring the ingredients and adding them to the recipe. Another thing that is important to note is to stick to the ratio. I often need to add more syrup or bitters, but before you think and do the same, thin twice. I insist you follow the balance as it is. 

12. Know When To Shake And Stir

shaking the cocktail

Most of us think making a cocktail only shales and stirs the liquids. However, if you know the right time to shake and stir the drinks, you can make a great drink. For instance, many cocktail recipes ask to start the liquids instead of shaking or prefer adding ice while shaking the ingredients. Knowing when to shake or stir, you can master this art. 

13. Practice The Art Of Making Cocktails

Making cocktails is an art. Simply because it involves creativity, and every drink will have some personal touch that makes it unique and different. Therefore, if you constantly practice, you can quickly learn all the tips and tricks. Make small batches of cocktails to try first, and if things feel right, experiment with complicated recipes. The first drink I ever made was non-alcoholic, and slowly, I jumped on alcoholic drinks and cocktails. 

14. Use Fresh Juices

Most of the cocktail recipes call for fruit juice. The flavors of juice mixed with any alcohol give very vibrant and tropical notes to the drink. Now, if you use juices sitting around for a long time, the fresh notes will no longer exist. That means your cocktail drink will need freshness and tropical flavors. 

So make sure that you use fresh juices. I extract the fruit juice using a juicer or squeezer. It takes hardly 5 minutes, and trust me, the overall flavor of my cocktail is so great and refreshing.

15. Learn The Basic Techniques

We all have seen bartenders following some technique while making the cocktails. You cannot make cocktails just by mixing the ingredients. You need to know the correct procedure and techniques. Trust me, you will learn them quickly. 

16. Chill The Glasses

chill

I had never tried this, but once, I was At my cousins’ and saw that she had kept the empty cocktail glasses in the freezer. My curiosity made me ask her the reason, and after that, I also did the same. Chilling the drinks and then serving the cocktails will change your experience. It may be the extra chillness, but the flavors were much enhanced. 

17. Make Your Syrup

Most of us will prefer to buy syrup from the nearby store. Honestly, there is no harm in using store-bought syrup. The taste and flavors will be almost the same, and it is easier and time-reducing. Now, let me tell you why you should make syrup at home and use the same in your cocktail. 

The simple reason is that the syrup made at home will be fresh and free from chemicals and preservatives. Also, the flavor of the syrup will be more authentic, which will elevate the overall taste of the cocktail. Also, making syrup is a relatively easy job. Make a batch and store it in suitable conditions to use it soon. 

18. Make A Sample First

Pro Tips To Make Your Cocktails Better!

I still remember making my first gin cocktail, and it turned out so bad that I could not even take another sip. The reason behind the utter failure was I was too confident as the recipe was quite simple. That day, I learned a lesson. So, I make a small sample batch whenever I have to create a new cocktail recipe. 

This way, I get to know how the drink will taste, and I will have a little experience to get everything right. Trust me on this, and always go for a sample batch, as even if your drink is unpleasant, you won’t regret throwing it away. 

19. Learn The Lingos

As I said, making cocktails is like an art, and when it comes to art, you need to learn the language of the art. Cocktail lingo is a language that helps communicate the type of drink you want. If someone asks you to make a neat cocktail, it does not mean the glass should be cleaned; instead, the drink should not have any other flavor or garnish. Similarly, if any recipe mentions serving the cocktail on the rocks, you must add ice to your glass.  

There are many times when we are checking the recipe, and if we are familiar with the jargon, then we can easily catch what the formula is trying to state and get the cocktail without much hassle. 

20. Flavor Theory

Before you call yourself a cocktail master, please learn about flavor theory. Flavor theory means knowing how to achieve the desired flavor by mixing different things. This is very important while you make cocktails. The idea of a cocktail is based upon mixing different flavors only. 

If you know the flavor theory, you can easily balance any sweet, sour, bitter, savory, and other flavors of the drink. It would be best to find a balance between two or more flavors. So, learn the theory, practice more, and enjoy the process. 

21. Importance Of Garnishing

Garnishing of cocktail

Cocktails are not simply mixing two or more flavors with alcohol. If your drink is not well garnished, you will miss an exceptional experience. Garnishing will elevate the flavors and texture. It will make the glass look more tempting and appealing. 

The drink’s color will be enhanced with elegance and sophistication. This allows you to have a complete experience of the cocktail. So next time, add the mint leaves or lemon wedge and ensure you enjoy your drink thoroughly. 

22. Presentation Matters Too

Honestly, I am a person who doesn’t give much thought to the presentation part. However, it is equally important to present your drink like making it. Presentation not only makes the glass look nice and tempting but also elevates the flavors automatically. 

Think of it this way – for the presentation, you will need to add some other ingredients that will faintly add flavors to the drink. Also, if you have done an excellent job making the cocktail, why not make it look good? Before tasting cocktails, anyone will judge the flavors by their appearance, so make sure you present them right.

Is It Possible To Fix A Bad Cocktail?

Pro Tips To Make Your Cocktails Better

Yes, it is possible to fix a sour cocktail. I know there can be days when your cocktail will taste like shit but don’t be disheartened because I got some fixable ways for your lousy cocktail. There can be times when your cocktail has “too much” of any flavor. So make sure you balance by adding the contrasting flavor. 

1. If Too Sweet

If your cocktail is too sweet, consider adding some sour or bitter flavors. Try adding some lemon or orange juice. It will help to dilute the extra sweetness in your drink. Nobody likes too much sweetness, so consider adding some salt to eliminate the different sweet notes.   

2. If Too Strong Or Bitter

Sometimes, we add extra alcohol or flavors to make our drinks stronger than required. Worry not, as you can quickly correct this mistake. Add some more liquid, like water or ice, to the glass. Try adding some syrup to add sweetness and balance the flavors. 

3. If Not Flavorful 

Once you try your cocktail and find the flavors not so tempting or similar to those served at the restaurant and the bar, it can be unpleasant. Your cocktail may lack some salt or sugar. These two kitchen items will make your cocktail so much better. Just a tiny pinch of salt or sugar and see the magic. 

Conclusion 

For sure, making cocktail drinks at home is fun and games. However, it would be best to stick to the essential tips to master the cocktail world. I love making cocktail drinks now and then. As the weekend is approaching, why don’t you try some of the recipes and enjoy them with your loved ones? 

I am sure that there is nothing that a good cocktail cannot fix. Don’t be worried about small things, and follow the instructions accurately. I hope you get to make and enjoy cocktails at home. Imagine how much money you’ll be saving. Remember to cook some great meals. I will be back soon. Until next time. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a cocktail?

A Cocktail is an alcoholic drink combined with spirits and other ingredients like juices and syrups. 

How can I make my cocktails better?

To make your cocktail better, make sure to use fresh ingredients, choose the best quality alcohol, cocktail equipment, and helpful tools, add bitters, play with flavor enhancers, add different shapes of ice, serve in cocktail glasses, and understand the basics of cocktails before making yourself one. 

How do you make a cocktail like a professional?

If you want to make a cocktail like a professional, learn some basic prices, use cocktail equipment, learn the terminologies, and practice often. 

Can a cocktail be non-alcoholic? 

No, a cocktail cannot be non-alcoholic, as the main ingredient in any cocktail is the alcohol. However, if you skip the alcohol, then it is more like a mocktail drink. 

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