11 essential ingredients for your at home bar (and how to use them)

Make Sure to Garnish your drinks!

The days of Rum and Cokes are over. Let me tell you how (just one way) to upgrade your bar without breaking the bank. How to make basic cocktails to impress just about anyone with just 11 ingredients and how to add other ingredients that you may have laying around the house.

Tools of the trade: 

  • Jigger 
  • Shaker  
  • Bar Spoon
  • Muddler  

Stock up on Spirits: 

  • Gin  
  • Whiskey  
  • Vodka  
  • Tequila  

Mixers: 

  • Lemons 
  • Limes  
  • Oranges
  • Bitters 
  • Club Soda 
  • Mint 
  • Sugar (also to be made into simple syrup 1(water):1(sugar) ratio) 

Old Fashioned

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Whiskey 
  • 1/3 oz Rich Simple – 2(sugar):1(water) 
  • 2-3 dashes Bitters  
  • Orange Swath (use a veggie peeler)  
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Use a pint glass, combine whiskey, simple, and bitters. Top with ice and stir for 20-30 seconds. Strain into rocks glass over ice (or really whatever glass you want) and garnish with an orange peel. Enjoy!  

Tom Collins

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • .75 oz Simple – 1(sugar):1(water)
  • .75 Fresh lemon juice
  • Club Soda
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Build in a shaker – combine Gin, Lemon, Simple, and Ice. SHAKE! Pour into a collins or highball and top with club soda.

WANT TO STEP IT UP? Add Lavender while your simple syrup cools for a Lavender Tom Collins

Whiskey Sour

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 oz Whiskey
  • .5 oz Simple – 1(sugar):1(water)
  • 1 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Build in a shaker – combine Whiskey, Lemon, Simple, and Ice. SHAKE! Pour into a rocks glass. Sip!

FEELING RISKY? Adding egg white will create that perfect foam layer. This is tricky but very satisfying to pull off.

  • Take an egg and crack it gently. Transfer the yolk back and forth until you have separated the egg white. VERY IMPORTANT TO NOT GET YOLK IN THE MIXTURE.
  • Once you have your egg white, strain again. Make sure to removed the chunky part (for lack of a better word). A tea strainer works nicely.
  • You want to add the egg white to the ingredients but its VERY important not to add ice yet. You want to dry shake the mixture to create foam. Try about 30 seconds.
  • Now we add the ice, shake another 15 seconds, and strain into a glass (no ice) and enjoy the frothy texture.

Gimlet

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • .75 oz Simple – 1(sugar):1(water)
  • .75 Fresh lemon juice
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Build in a rocks glass, add ice, stir and enjoy!

MAKE IT “HEALTHY”? Add Cucumber – muddle cucumber in the glass before adding the Gin and Ice. Cucumber Gimlet!

Mint Julep

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Bourbon
  • 1 oz Simple- 1(sugar):1(water)
  • Muddled Mint
  • Club Soda
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Grab a glass (or a julep glass if you have one) and add simple syrup and mint and beginning gently muddling the mint. Add bourbon, crushed ice (fill a ziplock bag with ice and crush), and club soda. Garnish with Mint and Drink UP!

NEED IT FRUITY? Add Blueberries or really any berries for that matter. Gently muddle them in with the mint.

Margarita – Hold the Triple Sec

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Tequila
  • .5 oz Simple- 1(sugar):1(water)
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • .5 oz Orange Juice
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Get your shaker, add ingredients, SHAKE, strain over ice, CHEERS!

WANT IT SPICY? Try muddling jalapeños or adding a Cayenne pepper/salt rim.

Mint Vodka Lemonade 

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Vodka
  • 1 oz Simple- 1(sugar):1(water)
  • 1 oz Lemon Juice
  • Mint
  • Club Soda
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Build in a shaker – combine Vodka, Lemon, Mint, Simple, and Ice. SHAKE! Pour into a collins or highball and top with club soda. You now have a fancy Vodka Lemonade!

Tequila Mojito 

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Tequila
  • .75 oz Simple- 1(sugar):1(water)
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • Mint
  • Club Soda
  • ICE

How to assemble: 

Build in a shaker – combine Lemon, Mint, Simple, and Mudde! Add Tequila, ice, and stir. Pour into a highball and top with club soda.

HAVING A GRILL OUT? Have any tropical fruit? Mangos, Pineapples, and Passionfruit would make this the perfect Summer Patio Pounder.

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