Imagine yourself on a desert island, or some kind of cocktail-zombie-apocalypse and you need a drink, natural coconut water, some island-made rum perhaps, zombie brain juice, what 5 pieces of kit would you need on your Mixology survival kit? What are the 5 essential pieces of bar equipment that every mixologist needs in order to make fantastic drinks every time when the inventory is limited.
On interviewing some of best bartenders, bar managers and key players on the UK Mixology scene we managed to wrangle it down to these 5 items.
Small, insignificant. Understated. This little tool can help the experienced bartender achieve anything from flaming essential citrus oils for the finishing touch to removing a beer bottle cap when nothing else is to hand! Not to mention, to quote one of the bartenders we spoke to, it’s for smoking breaks!
A Boston Tin
You can stir in it, you can use it to open bottle caps, you can throw drinks with it, it can be your ice scoop, and most importantly you can put a glass in it and shake up your favourite cocktails. This is the most iconic item in the bartenders’ inventory, synonymous with cocktails around the world and any kit would be incomplete without it!
Julep strainers are classic, Hawthorne strainers are nigh universal but whittled down to necessity the fine strainer takes the prize. The only strainer with a fine enough mesh to catch every bit of citrus pulp and shard of ice, the fine strainer ensures the perfect serve for your straight up Daiquiri or Margarita.
Also known as a spirit measure, the Jigger is quintessential for pinpoint accuracy in your ingredient ratios. If your free-pouring abilities are next to none this item of kit may be overlooked but for the all bartenders across the spectrum, the Jigger provides precision and ensures your drinks are consistent and accurate. On another note this tiny little tool ensures you keep within the legal restrictions of serving alcohol and tedious that may be, nobody wants to break the law, really, do they.
Argued by a number of Brighton Mixologists to take the number one spot of the essential piece of bar equipment. You can use it to measure spirits, be it a 5ml depth bar spoon, layer different liquids into your drinks for different presentations, churn, muddle and mix, stir and drizzle and accurately place garnishes into your final drink.
Cocktail mixology is mixing of liquids to create delicious combinations and recipes and with ice providing a reduction of temperature and dilution that cocktails require, all you really need is something to mix up your ingredients; namely a spoon.
Many thanks to the guys from The Salt Room, Altos, the Mixology School, B.Y.O.C and other bars across Brighton, UK for their input!
The Mixology Group is a Mixologist Training school, consultancy firm and events company based in Brighton, UK.
With over 16 years of experience of working across the industry, they specialize in Molecular level Mixology and Liquid Brand Development and have worked internationally with brands and companies and opening bars across the globe.
They offer globally recognized and accredited training courses and offer everything you need to work in the industry!
Peace, rum and good fun!