How to use a Cocktail Spoon
Looking for basic instruction on how to use a bar spoon? We'll refer you to Jim Meehan, who has one of the best demonstrations we've seen on how to properly use a cocktail spoon for stirred drinks. This video applies to using all traditional cocktail spoons, such as the Aero Cocktail Spoon.
Using the Wingman Cocktail Spoon is even easier - just hold the handle of the spoon, insert it into the mixing glass with ice, and stir as you normally would stir anything. The spoon does the work for you.
Standard Spoon Demo Videos
We're currently working on updating this section with some more polished demonstration videos of the two spoons. In the meantime, here are a few videos updates from our Kickstarter campaign that give you a closer look:
In each of these videos we refer to the Aero Cocktail Spoon as the "Classic" version, and the Wingman Cocktail Spoon as the "Spin" model, as the names for each spoon were not released until June 2015.
On our blog page we've collected some favorite recipes. Some are classic cocktails, some are variations made by people we love and admire, and some are cocktails we came up with at home. Check out our collection here.
For more comprehensive recipe collections, we recommend these online resources:
Home Bar Basics: This is our best recommendation for those of you who want to make cocktails at home. Dave Stolte will give you an introduction not just to some of the cornerstone recipes in cocktails, but to technique, vocabulary, and the history behind some of our most beloved drinks. The Home Bar Basics Book is also available for purchase, a handy companion guide (with water-resistant paper for durability at the bar!)
Imbibe Magazine: A huge collection of recipes, including a slew of variations on classic cocktails by contributing bartenders.
These books also contain tons of recipes, as well as techniques, history, and cocktail lore! Here are some of our favorites.
The Drunken Botanist: A fascinating must-have for any aspiring cocktailian who has a love of plants and herbs. From the plants we use to make alcohol, to the botanicals, herbs and spices we use for flavoring it, to the fresh ingredients we mix it with, Amy Stewart explores biology, history, chemistry, etymology and mixology in a completely approachable and fascinating way. The book includes more than 50 drink recipes and instructions for infusing your own spirits and making syrups, brandied cherries, and more. $19.95.
The Savoy Cocktail Book: Prohibition-era cocktail book originally published in 1930, this is a go-to for reading up and re-discovering classic cocktails. Written by Harry Craddock, who left for London during the United States Prohibition, this book contains favorites like the Corpse Reviver No. 2. Available as a facsimile reprint on Amazon for $15.95.
The PDT Cocktail Book: A beautiful tome with over 300 receipes, this book is a favorite partly due to the level of craftsmanship and cover-to-cover illustrations by Chris Gall. As artists ourselves, we like this a lot! Recipes are also annotated with little background stories about where they come from, whether created at PDT, resurrected from classic cocktail books or discovered at a friend's bar. Bonus sections on bar organization, glassware, cocktail technique, and tidbits about the New York City cocktail scene. $24.95
Home Bar Basics: this pocket-sized, water-resistent book is an essential guide for quick reference at the home bar. It includes a handy introduction to different types of spirits, mixers, and liqueurs, as well as a basic explanation of techniques. Recipes include 12 basic drinks, and 18 "not-so-basics" to move on to. $14.99.
All About Ice
Good ice helps make good cocktails. When small ice bits or chips are used for stirring, shaking, and serving, the result is often an over-diluted drink. We recommend using larger cubes for stirring ice. Tovolo makes silicone trays for perfectly suqare ice cubes that are 1.25" which we think are ideal (unless you have a Kold-Draft ice machine... then you win). These square cubes also add a great deal to the presentation of a drink
Whether you're making a stirred or shaken cocktail, the ice you use contributes to around 15% - 25% of your finished cocktail, so the quality of ice you use is important. If you live in Southern California like we do, ice made from unfiltered tap water is full of minerals and who-kn0ws-what-else, and can impart unwanted flavors. Use good water to reduce impurties. We use filtered water for regular ice, and distilled water for making clear ice, because most of the impurities (which contribute to cloudy ice) have been removed.
We like to make clear ice for special occaisions and presentation, especially for cocktails served over a large ice rock, like the Old Fashioned or Negroni. There are several different tools and ice molds you can buy to make clear ice at home (many of which had their start on Kickstarter!), but if you want a lot of clear ice, there are some homemade methods that work quite well. Check out Camper English's blog for his index of ice experiments, and stay around for an up and coming blog post here on our site about how we do it.