Josh's Pro Tips
- I always add ingredients from least-expensive-by-volume to most-expensive-by-volume; that way when I inevitably screw up I can minimize the cost.
- Do yourself a favor and buy a bar mat—they make for quick cleanup and they're cheap online. They also make great drying mats for dishes and can be rolled up for storage.
- Stir for ~ 20 seconds. Got an instant read thermometer? Take a look and stop somewhere between 21º F and 27º F (-6ºC and -3ºC).
- If you're dropping Olives into your martini, toss them (and their brine) into the fridge a couple hours before you start making drinks. Mixed drinks are a tug-of-war between enthalpy and entropy that brings a drink to -6º below the freezing point of water, and it's an abomination to the work you've done to toss in 20 or 30 grams of 68º F stuff — that changes the way you taste the drink (the taste of the vermouth in the drink, most dramatically) and the life of the cocktail.
- On that note - store your gin in the freezer and the Vermouth in the fridge. It's going to give you far more control over dilution (ice melting while it cools) as well as the final temperature of the drink.
- Freeze everything—serving glasses, mixing glasses, all the booze.
- Store a few pint glasses (beer glasses) in the freezer, no-one has the cash to throw down for multiple fancy mixing glasses and you're usually making a few drinks in an evening. Use the mixing glass to impress your guests, and use the pint glass for your own drink while they're chatting in the other room. Plus it's always good to have a few pint glasses chilled for beer or seltzer water, it's a nice touch.