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What are the different types of cocktail strainers?

When it comes to crafting your favorite cocktails, there’s more to it than just pouring and mixing. Cocktail strainers are some of the essential equipment a cocktail maker needs to create beautiful drinks. Those handy tools behind the bar ensure your drink is smooth and sip-worthy. Let’s break down the basics in a way that makes sense for everyone.

Understanding the Three Amigos: Different Types of Cocktail Strainers

1. Hawthorne Strainer

Known for its coil-like appearance, the Hawthorne strainer is the OG of cocktail strainers. It’s the one with the spring that hugs the inside of your mixing tin, making sure no unwanted bits make it into your glass.

Hawthorn strainer

2. Julep Strainer

Meet the cool cousin, the Julep strainer. It’s the one without the spring – just a flat, elegant piece of metal. Bartenders love using it with mixing glasses for a classy strain, especially when making stirred cocktails. This is commonly used for stir and strain cocktails where no shake is required but only stirring. This allows the dilution of the cocktails making it chilled and with a softer taste. A Julep Strainer will be required to separate the used ice from the cocktail.

Julep Strainers

3. Fine Mesh Strainer

Last but not least, the fine mesh strainer or Gorky Strainer ( the most popular used among bartenders ). This one is the filtration expert, ensuring not even the tiniest bits sneak into your drink. It’s often used in tandem with the Hawthorne strainer for that extra smooth finish. If you find your cocktail having bits of fruit and ice, that means the bartender did not bother to use a Fine Strainer.

Gorky Strainer

Where to Find Them

Next time you’re at a bar, take a peek behind it. You’ll likely spot these strainers hanging out with the shakers and mixing glasses, ready to jump into action. If you are a bartender looking for your starter kit, we at Bar Tools Express can help you pick the right one for you.

Choosing the Right Strainer for You

Quick Tips
  1. Hawthorne for Everyday Sipping:
    • Ideal for most cocktails, especially those shaken with ice.
  2. Julep for Stirred Elegance:
    • Perfect for drinks that are stirred, not shaken – think Old Fashioned or Martini.
  3. Fine Mesh for Ultra-Smooth Vibes:
    • Use it alongside the Hawthorne for a silky-smooth finish.

Enjoy the perfect strain.

Now that you’re acquainted with these three straining amigos, you’re ready to elevate your cocktail game. Whether you’re mixing up a classic or crafting something new, having the right strainer by your side ensures each sip is perfection. Here’s to your next perfectly strained cocktail adventure! 🍹

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