Straining cocktails is an essential part of being a bartender. Having the proper strainers on hand is crucial for serving cocktails up.
Typically you’ll be using two popular tools for straining- The Hawthorne strainer or the attached strainer on a cobbler cocktail shaker.
Using these tools is an easy way to strain a drink. However they can slow you down a bit. If you want to learn to be the fastest bartender you can be you’ll have to learn this alternate straining method.
Although this method is more difficult, it will speed things up. First off, in order for this method to work you’ll have to be using a Boston shaker. The Boston cocktail shaker is made up of a glass and a metal mixing cup that fits over the glass.
To learn more about different shakers check out our bartending tools article. Here’s how this straining method works.
Once your finished shaking the drink and get the mixing glass and metal shaker loosened, hold both the mixing glass and shaker horizontally over the martini glass.
At this point you want to keep the liquor in the cocktail shaker by not allowing the mixing glass and shaker to be separated. From here slowly make a small gap between the mixing glass and shaker.
Make sure to keep this gap small. Your goal is to create a space large enough for the liquor to pour out, yet small enough for no ice to come out.
This will be tricky at first because your hands will be hard to keep steady which may cause ice to fall out. That’s why it’s important to practice this before trying it on the job.
If you’ve got a busy bar and your trying to attempt tricks you’re unfamiliar with you’ll only cause more harm than good. Ice will end up plopping into your drink causing an unpleasant splash. Not to mention the guest asked for the cocktail to be served up.
Practice this straining method and you’ll be a quicker bartender for it. Start adding tricks like this to you’re bartending skills and you’ll be the fastest bartender around. And fast bartenders get tips!