Anyone can make their own cocktails. Perhaps the best example is myself, because I am not a natural born talent. Yet for many people the threshold is high to start making cocktails at home. But you don’t have to build up a huge drink stock before you can start making cocktails yourself. You can actually start very easily from a good foundation. I often get the question where to start when people want to make their own cocktails. I have listed my answer in 10 steps in the visual below. Very handy if you like to start making cocktails yourself!
My most important tip: don’t make it too difficult for yourself in the beginning and just do it!
1. Cocktail tools
Make sure you have the right cocktail tools at home such as a cocktail shaker, bar spoon, muddler, squeezer (presser) and a bar buddy (measuring cup to measure exact amounts).
2. Drinks: the big 5
You don’t have to get all the drinks straight away. Start with the “big 5”. Rum, vodka, gin, triple sec, whiskey. You will come a long way with this. Then gradually expands once you’ve found your flavor.
3. Cocktail glasses
You should definitely have a few nice martini glasses, long drink glasses and tumblers at home. Jar glasses and gin tonic copa glasses are very popular at the moment. You can read which cocktail glass you need for which cocktail in my blog about cocktail glasses.
Make sure you always have lime and lemon on hand, as these are basic flavors for many cocktails. In addition, you often use sugar syrup from cane sugar. You can make this yourself, but it is even easier to just buy a sugar syrup. And cocktail cherries! You can easily expand from this base.
Tip: try to vary with things you have in the kitchen. Such as exotic fruits, red pepper or other spices.
No cocktails are without ice. And you need a lot of ice. Fortunately, we have a very good American fridge with fresh ice cubes and crushed ice. But you can also very well get ice cream in the supermarket in bags. In addition, it is also nice that you have ice in an ice bucket and ice tongs for it.
6. Correct sizes
The dimensions of a cocktail are super important. Simply because too much or too little is immediately noticeable in your cocktail. Therefore, always use a bar buddy and follow the correct measurements indicated in the cocktail recipe.
Do not rely only on the recipe, but also on your own taste. So taste it when you make the cocktail, then you know how your cocktail tastes before you serve it.
Tip: you can easily taste with a straw. You see a lot of bartenders doing this too. Hold the straw at the back by pressing your index finger on the opening. From top to bottom, insert the straw into your drink. By keeping your finger on the opening at the end, the drink stays in the straw and you can easily taste a small
A cocktail without garnish is like a birthday without streamers. So pay attention to a nice garnish for your cocktail that matches the taste and appearance of your cocktail. The more you do this, the more creative you become.
You can read more about garnishes in my blog How do you garnish your cocktail?
9. Just do it
Don’t make it too difficult for yourself in the beginning and start with the cocktails where you don’t need too many ingredients. The Mojito , the Caipirinha or the Piña Colada are good cocktails to start with and you don’t have to prepare a whole shopping list for them.
10. Invite your friends
There’s no point in drinking cocktails on your own. Drinking cocktails is a social thing. So invite your friends and have fun!
Tip: if you are going to invite a lot of people, think of a nice theme for your cocktail party.