The art of bartending includes a few savvy techniques that can actually make your favorite libations a bit tastier. Just like the recipe for some of your favorite foods, making the perfect cocktail includes a few moves you may not be aware of including the age-old technique and question: Shaken or stirred?

The Science Behind Your Favorite Cocktail

While we all know that some drinks are shaken vs. stirred, we don’t all know exactly why some drinks are better when shaken instead of just simply being poured into the glass to be served. The main reason some cocktails are shaken vs. stirred is all about taste. The technical explanation indicates that shaking removes volatile organic compounds that can negatively affect the taste of the alcohol, kind of like wine tastes better when it is opened before serving to allow it to breath.

The foodie explanation for shaking cocktails instead of stirring them is all about taste as well. When the ingredients of a drink are shaken, they are blended more thoroughly, to ensure a consistent taste while enjoying the libation. In addition, the air bubbles created by the shaking offer a light, frothy drink and helps avoid layers of different flavors in multi-ingredient drinks.

When to Shake and When to Stir

When you mix various ingredients together, especially those that contain sugar, spices, or juices that contain pulp, shaking them allows the ingredients to meld together to form an amazing, delicious, and sometimes frothy concoction. The general rule is that if you make a cocktail using any citrus juice, shaking works better. In addition, libations like White Russians that contain cream or a Creamsicle that uses milk, simply would not be the same if they were stirred vs. shaken.

When you are creating cocktails at home, remember that simple drinks like Crown and Coke or 7&7 are great when stirred, but complex cocktails need a good shaking to blend all the amazing flavors to deliver a delicious concoction to enjoy!

For the perfect cocktail, visit us at McCray’s Tavern Midtown!