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Cocktail Recipes Information

Article by Carolyn Donohue

You’re planning a cocktail party. Maybe it’s to celebrate a birthday, an anniversary or a significant achievement, such as that terrific job you’ve been working towards. Whatever the reason (and you don’t really need a reason, do you) it’s always a pleasant occasion where friends can get together and enjoy a cocktail or two; and having unique and great tasting cocktail recipes for your guests only enhances the party.

It’s not difficult to plan a successful cocktail party. Perhaps it will be an outdoors gathering, on your deck or patio. Some background music, soft lighting, comfortable patio furniture and a few basic bar supplies is all you’ll need. And you don’t have to be a professional bartender to create and serve a memorable cocktail – but there are a few basics which will make your party a roaring success.

What kind of glassware will you need? Mixing your cocktails and serving them in the correct glass is important – the drink should look attractive and in order to serve a variety of different cocktails, you’ll need a variety of different glasses. Champagne glasses or flutes, martini glasses, liqueur glasses and perhaps some taller glasses in which to serve Collins cocktails, slings or soft drinks should be sufficient. And you’ll need some shorter glasses known as “rock” glasses or “shot”. A good bar will have all these to hand and when a guest asks you for a particular cocktail, how cool is it to be able to serve it in the right glass.

You’re going to need a blender to create some of the most popular drinks. Just a simple one will do the job as long as it has a motor which is powerful enough to crush ice which is an essential ingredient in most cocktails. And you might consider investing in a proper cocktail shaker. It doesn’t have to be a sterling silver one – stainless steel will do fine, but it must have a strainer in it as many cocktail recipes should be shaken and strained before decanting them into a glass.

Now – we’re moving right along. What bar supplies do we need? Vodka is an essential part of many cocktails because it is clear, virtually tasteless and goes with practically every ingredient known to a bartender, so make sure that you have sufficient. Rum – white and dark is another favorite as it forms the basis of many tropical drinks; perfect for your patio cocktail party. Bourbon is a good one to have on hand because it blends well with lemon slices or mint leaves. And if you’re planning to mix a pitcher of margaritas, you must have tequila. You can serve tequila in a shot or rock glass too with a salt-rimed edge and lemon wedges. What else – gin? Yes, gin! It’s the basis of many cocktails with its unusual juniper-berry taste – or you can serve it straight on the rocks with a twist of lemon. Have a couple of bottles of different liqueurs on hand too, such as grenadine, cherry brandy, Curacao and don’t forget a bottle of Irish cream!

Have some soft drinks in your fridge too – some guests enjoy a non-alcoholic cocktail and you’ll need a variety of juices on hand, such as tomato, pineapple, orange juices. Add some soda drinks and you are good to go.

One more thing – as we’re making and creating cocktails, we’ll need some garnishes for them. Those little umbrellas are de rigueur – everyone smiles at them – and everyone loves them. Some lime and lemon wedges, sliced strawberries, pineapple chunks and fresh orange slices to dress up the glasses. And you’ll definitely need three small plates, one to hold salt for margaritas, a second one holding a thick fruit syrup and the third with sugar. You dip the rim of the glass in the liquid and then into the salt or sugar, depending on which cocktail you’re making.

And finally – consider serving a punch. You’ll need a punchbowl – any large glass bowl will be just right. You don’t really need those little punch glasses because your guests can sip punch from whatever kind of glass you have on hand as long as you garnish it – and your punch can be a non-alcoholic one for those guests who are driving home that evening.

There are those who love parties of all kinds, but who choose not to drink alcohol for several reasons. That’s never a problem if you have a punch to serve them – and remember that people really don’t care what you have in your glass as long as they have what they want in theirs!

Good luck with your cocktail party – I’m looking forward to it already!

Cocktail Recipe Information

Article by Mitch Ross

No friendly gathering is complete without a few cocktails. A good and unique cocktail not only keeps people talking when at home, but are great conversation starters at the gathering. This leads to a social “good time”. To serve great or unique cocktails, a professional bartender is not needed. Learning a few basics is all that will be needed.

Of course you have to have something to serve the cocktails in. Glassware is where you begin. Serving a drink in the proper glassware sends messages to your guests that you know what you are talking about where beverages are concerned. Proving this, your judgment should be trusted when knowing what they might like is concerned. Cocktail glassware includes champagne glasses, martini glasses, liqueur glasses, tall cocktail glasses and rock glasses (better known as shot glasses). When offering a full bar, the different types of glassware should be stocked. Being prepared for whatever cocktail a guest might order is a sign of a well prepared host.

Investing in the proper equipment to create some of the most popular beverages is the least a well stocked bar should carry. The equipment does not have to cost much or be flashy; it should get the job done. If the bar has no other equipment, it should have a very good blender. Like the above mentioned items, it does not have to be expensive, just have a very good working motor with sharp blades. The sharp blades are for crushing ice. Another piece of equipment is a cocktail shaker. Popular cocktail recipes call to be shaken and or strained. This is a reason cocktail shakers are required.

Prior to the social function, inventory your spirits. Vodka is debatable whether being the most popular or not. Vodka is appreciated for it absence of flavor, vodka mixes well with nearly every component available. Vodka is a spirit that should be well maintained. Run is another popular spirit. Rum does have a unique flavor, making it not as versatile as vodka. It does go well with other items. Bourbon is a spirit that is also popular. Bourbon is often used to hide acidic flavors such as lemons or mint. Tequila is another popular drink, often by the shot. Some people use lemon and salt with tequila. Gin is a spirit like vodka. Quite a few recipes call for gin due to its singular taste. After the spirits have been poured, garnishes complete the drink. This finishes the drink making it more appealing. While they look cheap and useless, paper umbrellas will make people laugh, making them something the bar has to have. A well stocked bar will have the ingredients to make sweetened and salted rims. Dip the rims onto a clean plate containing the ingredient that makes the rim sticky. Once the rim is coated, then dip the rim into the sugar or salt. Lemons or limes are required as fruit garnishes.