Ever wonder why the drinks you make at home just don’t seem to taste the same as the ones you order at fancy cocktail bars? It’s not because you’re a terrible bartender or because the bartenders you’re visiting have some magical tricks; it’s simply a few steps that ensure quality and flavor.
The number one secret of a great cocktail is fresh squeezed juice. While many people buy their juices, going straight to the source and buying the fruit itself is the way to go. Make your life easier and spend a little money on a hand juicer and a fine strainer. Both are readily available, and using them will result in a better drink.
To get the best tasting juice squeeze juice up to six hours before mixing your drinks. Make sure you are using a fine strainer to remove the pulp. Not only is the pulp unsightly, it actually causes the juice to go bad at a much more rapid rate. Juice with out pulp can last in your fridge for one week.
One cocktail that is great for home bartending is a Fitzgerald. It sounds complicated and tastes complex, but is easy as pie to make. To make a Fitzgerald you’re going to want a good gin. I always recommend Tanqueray for home bars. It’s a great price and is your quintessential London Dry gin; you will never be able to blame the gin for a bad tasting cocktail.
To make a Fitzgerald you’ll also need simple syrup, a mixture of equal parts water and sugar cooked until the sugar dissolves. You’ll shake this cocktail to mix, so if you don’t have a shaker tin a great substitute is a Ball jar with the lid on tight. Sit back, take a sip, and enjoy the spring weather with a Fitzgerald in hand!