If you are someone who believes that making and mixing a quality cocktail involves pouring a random amount of different alcoholic drinks into a large vessel, then following this by giving it a quick stir or shake and then topping it off with a small paper umbrella and some sliced fruit garnish, then my friend you are seriously mistaken and are doing the world of cocktails a massive disservice.
If it is your wish to enter into and progress your career as a top cocktail mixologist, then it is absolutely fundamental to your progression that you not only recognise and understand that there is more to great cocktail mixing than you think but that you actually act upon this knowledge.
Cocktails can be stirred, on the rocks, shaken, neat, straight up, with a kick or dirty.
It does not matter how you order yours as there is a universal constant and that is, everyone loves a well mixed cocktail.
It has been said that cocktails have inspired poets, famous artists, world leaders, a specific style of dress and the imagination of bar tenders the world over.
Today, the modern cocktail bar now mixes more cocktails than ever before, with a cocktail menu no longer presented as an additional extra in exclusive restaurants and bars but as an essential part in any food or drink venue.
The variety and amounts of cocktails that bars now have on their cocktail menus have also changed with the more developed palates of the cocktail drinker today.
Right now the cocktail industry is booming and with a modest amount of commitment, practice and training then the world of a top mixologist is within reach.
Any person, bar proprietor or boss who is keen on teaching their bar employees the fundamental principles of great cocktails, needs to start by understanding a little of the history of cocktails.
This should include the origins and evolution of the classics as well as a bit of the glamour and intrigue behind the drinks.
The effect will be to enhance the appreciation of the actual art of cocktail making whilst making it entertaining for customers.
The next logical step to progressing to a higher level of cocktail bartender competency is to learn your way around the different components parts of cocktail equipment along with when to and how to stir and shake.
Once these skills are mastered, cocktail training allows bartenders to progress to the heady heights of mixology, creating their own recipes and techniques whilst contributing to drinks lists.
The possibility of being of such quality that you are invited into the lucrative world of drinks brands is feasible or you may even consider the option of entering the cocktail competition circuit.
To summarise, cocktail recipes are very precise; the amounts and order of the drinks poured cannot be messed with and if you just cobble together something you believe to be a great mix then you will not only lose the interest of a customer who has an educated and discerning palate but they will feel insulted.
You must understand that a cocktail mixologist is not just a bartender, they are entertainers and educators and they carry out their business in capable and confident manner, that is why sourcing a professional instructor is so important.
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