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Building A Better Home Bar with Jeffrey Morgenthaler

on 03/11/14 at 1:21 pm

Booze News

Unlike most professional cocktail-makers, Jeffrey Morgenthaler knows drinks from a few different directions. “I do five jobs,” Morgenthaler remarks, laughing.

indexHe’s the bar manager of Clyde Common and Pepé le Moko, both in Portland, Oregon. He’s the founder of Repeal Day. And he’s the author of The Bar Book: Elements of Cocktail Technique (Chronicle Books, 2014), a book that belongs in the hands of anyone who wants to not only mix a good drink, but also have a go at making cocktail components (flavored syrups, bitters, purées, tonic water…) and learn how to select gear and ingredients.

In a recent chat, he shared some expert tips and tricks on how to set up a simple, effective home bar.

Asked what common mistakes home bartenders make, Morgenthaler has an immediate answer: “Not shaking drinks hard enough or long enough.” It’s a common mistake. “I think a lot of people shake for three seconds and then think it’s done.” What should you aim for? “Ten to fifteen seconds, shaken very hard.”

You’re shaking to a dual purpose: dilution and chill. The two are inseparable. “You can’t get a drink cold without getting it diluted,” Morgenthaler says, “and you can’t get it diluted without getting it cold.”