Tips for Crafting the Perfect Cocktail That Shows You Care

Cocktail and cocktail accessories on table
There’s a lot more to learning to craft the perfect drink than having your fair share of experience drinking them (unfortunately). Here are some tips to making the perfect drink that your friends and family will appreciate.

When it comes to finding the perfect gift for a friend or loved one, it can sometimes feel a little overwhelming. In an effort to be original or to get a gift that someone close to you will really enjoy and appreciate, many of us find ourselves dropping the ball. If you are looking to find that perfect gift for the cocktail enthusiast in your life, however, there’s something that you can do that will touch their heart and speak to their interests. This is, of course, making the effort to craft the perfect drink that shows you care. Read on as we’ll be detailing all of the things that go into making the perfect drink that your friends and family will appreciate more than any fancily wrapped gift box.


Learning to Craft the Perfect Drink

There’s a lot more to learning to craft the perfect drink than having your fair share of experience drinking them (unfortunately). From researching how different liquors are made to perfecting some of the most popular cocktail recipes, crafting the perfect drink with a level of mastery isn’t something that happens overnight. Regardless, you can start learning how to show your appreciation for the cocktail lover in your life today and it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming undertaking. 

So where should you start? One of the best ways to dive into the world of crafting cocktails is to take advice from those who know what they’re doing. This doesn’t necessarily mean taking a trip down to your favorite local bar and bending the bartender’s ear in an effort to learn all of the secrets of the trade. You can start to gain knowledge on the art of cocktails right from your couch! From books to YouTube tutorials, there is a wealth of information out there that you can use to get yourself acquainted with the basics.  

Crafting the perfect drink that really shows you care starts with having a basic knowledge of cocktails and doing the necessary research will save you a lot of trouble when it comes time to work with the finer details.


Choosing the Perfect Drink for Your Giftee

If your goal is to show someone special in your life just how much they mean to you by crafting the perfect drink, you will do well to choose a recipe that is personalized to their tastes. Your loved one will greatly appreciate the time and thought you put into their gift if they are able to see that the drink was crafted specifically with them in mind. 
Choose the ingredients and presentation that speaks to who your giftee is as a person and make sure it is something they enjoy. If your loved one appreciates a dignified whiskey, make sure you speak to this when crafting your creation. If the cocktail enthusiast in your life is a fan of a tasteful Gin and Tonic, make sure this classic cocktail is a central theme as you craft the perfect drink for them. As important as the technical aspects are as you make the perfect drink for someone special in your life, a little bit of attention to the most personal aspects will go a long way in showing them how much you appreciate them.


An Attention to Detail

Ask any experienced bartender or cocktail enthusiast and it is likely they’ll tell you that crafting the perfect drink is, in itself, an artform. This means that creating the perfect drink that your loved one will appreciate involves an attention to detail. Much like a writer perfecting their novel by doing extensive editing or an artist spending time making sure that their masterpiece is just right, crafting the perfect drink is a process and every little detail is owed an equal amount of attention.


Choosing the Right Ice

When we said that it was important to exercise attention to detail we meant it and that means paying attention to even the smallest components- right down to choosing the right ice. Erick Castro, founder of Rickhouse and Bourbon & Branch in San Francisco, views ice as not only an important part of crafting the perfect drink, but as a central component of the process. 
According to Castro, choosing the right ice for a cocktail is often something “we give the least attention to” even though it, as he says, “is going to have a direct impact on the quality and integrity of the cocktail when you’re done.” When it comes down to the science of crafting the perfect drink, the quality and type of ice that you use can make all the difference in the look and taste of your cocktail. 
It is a simple fact that different types of ice are better for different types of cocktails. For example, popular drinks like Gin and Tonic or Whiskey Soda are best complemented by the use of cracked ice or ice shards. On the other hand, cracked ice isn’t going to be the best choice for more spirit-focused drinks like the Manhattan. In this case, big ice cubes are central to keeping drink temperature and dilution steady for an extended period of time and are a much better choice.


Choosing the Right Garnish

The right garnish will complement your drink in all the right ways and offer much more than just a pleasing visual effect. In fact, garnishes play a key role in bringing out the flavors of a cocktail and this makes choosing the right garnish very important. 
Some ingredients used as garnishes just won’t mix well with certain types of cocktails. For example, you wouldn’t use a particularly earthy herb to complement the tropical flavors found in a Pina Colada- it would just throw everything off. Work to select a garnish that is similar enough to the flavors already present in your cocktail and use it to highlight them appropriately. Citrusy cocktails can be made even more delicious by using a fruit garnish and olives pair well with drinks like vodka martinis. To craft the perfect drink that shows you care, take the time to experiment with different garnishes until you’ve found the perfect combination.


Choosing the Right Glassware

The final step in crafting the perfect drink as a gift for your friends or family members is choosing the right glassware. You can think of your drink’s glassware as the gift box that houses the gift itself and should pay just as much mind in selecting it as you would when wrapping a present. This is where you can get really creative when presentation. 
It is best to choose glassware that offers that extra aesthetic appeal to your creation but choosing the right glassware actually does more than just making your drink attractive. In fact, there are a number of reasons that choosing the right glassware is important including taste, temperature, and even aroma.  
The aroma that is released from your cocktail can depend on the size of the glassware’s mouth, for example. Cocktails containing dark liquors like whiskey or scotch are typically best suited for shorter glasses as they will warm up quicker. As you can see, there are many components of a good cocktail  that can be highlighted and accentuated by the type of glassware it is presented in. Keep this in mind as you work to craft the perfect drink that shows you care.    

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