Tools 101 highlights the necessary tools one needs when starting out with home bartending. Your bar tools are the foundation on which you’ll build out your creations, so these are items that *every* homebar absolutely needs to have on hand. I’m keeping this as short as possible, but check out Tools 102 below if you’re looking for more.
Most stainless shakers (any style) should work just fine. This is your workhorse for any shaken cocktail
- Mixing Glass
Used to mix your cocktails when stirring. Keeping it simple – any pint glass will work fine.
- Long handle bar spoon
A regular spoon is hard to use when stirring drinks with ice to get proper dilution. Get a nice weighted one and avoid the ones with the little red caps. I’ve been using this Swissmar one for years.
- Hawthorne Strainer
Used to strain and keep ice out of your cocktails after mixing or using a Boston-style shaker. I use the OXO one
- Y peeler
Used to peel citrus for your garnishes. Again I’m an OXO fangirl
- The Bar Book by Jeffrey Morgenthaler
Fundamentals and technique behind cocktail creations
- PDT app for iOS
Classic and extensive recipes in digital form definitely worth getting if you have an iPhone
Tools 102: more tools
Once you have all the basics and are looking to expand your tools arsenal, here are some additional tools that are great to have for your basic home bar. These are not *critical* and you can still make awesome cocktails without it, but these are all indispensable in my collection.
- Citrus press
Strongly recommend a stainless steel hand press. They are pricier than aluminum ones but are much sturdier and will last you forever
Wooden flat-ended ones are best
- Small mesh strainer
Used to ‘double-strain’ a drink to remove all ice shards and any large particles from added ingredients for maximum smoothness and clarity. I use an OXO one
- Cocktail glassware
Cocktail coupes, Old Fashioned glasses, Highball glasses
- Ice molds
Square and round molds will take your cocktail creations up a notch – those half moon fridge cubes are no fun
- Cocktail picks
Recommend stainless steel reusable ones for adding garnishes to your creations
- Martin’s Index app for iOS
Huge collection of classic archived recipes
Technique, ingredients, and recipes to create professional cocktails at home
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