Shake or Stir?
If you love to make drinks at home and even know a couple of recipes but still feel unconfident and check the instructions to know whether you should shake or stir the cocktail, this blog is for you. Learn which cocktails should be stirred and which are asking for a good shake.
When to shake a cocktail?
If your cocktail consists of ingredients that are of different densities with alcohol — shake it. These are milk, cream, egg white, and citrus juice. Vigorous shaking helps to combine the ingredients all together and aerates the drink. And, of course, shaking dilutes and chills the cocktail. So, always shake your Margarita, sours, Cosmopolitan, Daiquiri, Mai Tai.
Don't try to shake the carbonated drinks — soda water, sparkling wine, or beer, cause you don't want this uncontrolled explosion to happen. Top up the bubbles after shaking all other ingredients.
When to stir a cocktail?
Stirring is a more gentle technique compared to shaking. Stirring helps to create a crystal clear drink, without any foam or tiny water bubbles.
If you want just delicately combine the ingredients with minimal dilution, you should stir the drink. For stirring use a long-handled bar spoon and stir the drink in a circular motion for 30-40 seconds to chill the drink.
If your drink is made with all spirits, like Martini, Negroni — you should stir it. Also, if the cocktail includes bitters, like Old Fashioned, you should also stir it. Some cocktails made with shrubs can also be stirred. For example, this Rose Martini, created by Nonsuch Shrubs.
Blend ingredients in Cocktail Shaker with ice. Stir for 15 seconds. Strain into glass.⠀
Stirring chills and dilutes drink while shaking additionally changed its structure. So, if you are making cocktails with all clear ingredients, you should stir them. And if you are using cloudy ingredients, such as citrus juice or cream — you want to shake it well.
Of course, you can break these rules and we are not gonna stop you. There are always exceptions, so the best way is to follow the recipe's instructions or experiment and see which drink you enjoy more.