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Making Cocktails with Science

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As drinks in the best bars reach new levels of sophistication, their preparation has been taking on a decidedly scientific bent. A recent Business Insider article profiled a number of bars around the world now using laboratory-inspired equipment. Vacuum machines, industrial filters and tabletop stills are just some of the equipment used. For example, a pina colada might be made of distilled, clarified ingredients frozen with liquid nitrogen for optimal smoothness. The top bartenders are now fine-tuning just about every aspect of the cocktails they serve.

CNC Machined Ice

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State of the Art Ice Machines and Mini-Jets

The Artesian in London, ranked World’s Best Bar in 2012 and 2013, is known for its opulent and innovative drinks. There’s one that features a hovering scent balloon above it, and another served behind a mirror so you can check out how you look while you drink it. The ice is now carved by computerized machines that can emboss logos onto large pucks that float on the tops of their creative libations.

The Canon bar in Seattle uses an innovative take on drink filtration. While conventional methods include strainers, cheesecloth or even coffee filters, Canon uses a wine filter called a Mini-Jet. It effectively filters wines to remove any sediment and “polishes” the vino. They also use the Mini-Jet to filter their gourmet bitters and infusions.

A Centrifuge and an Online Drink Academy

Booker and Dax in New York use a hi-tech centrifuge to separate ingredients by weight, clarify juices and separate out their “milk-washed” spirits. The spinning centrifuge effectively and efficiently removes liquids from solids, increasing the yield and creating nice, clear juices that help carbonated cocktails to better retain their fizz.

UDEMY LogoStonehurst Manor is a luxury boutique hotel in New Hampshire that offers an exclusive private mansion hotel experience in the gorgeous White Mountains. The Manor is known for premier food and drink, and bartender Michael Rego has perfected a number of innovative, delicious and, some say “magic” concoctions. Visitors are often excited to find out that they can learn to make Stonehurst Manor’s best cocktails online. Some of the highlights include The Avatar, Three Hour Tour, and the Asian Pear Mojito.

Whether it comes up in conversation or you’ve decided to learn how to be a professional mixologist, an awareness of some of the key terminology can go a long way. Here are some of the basics:

Muddle. This refers to the softening and breaking up of fruits, herbs and other garnishes. It’s usually best to muddle in a mixing tin then transfer into the glass.

Shake. Shaking cocktails in a shaker with ice is the optimal way to chill them; it’s best to shake as vigorously as possible.

Stir. Stirring to chill a drink takes longer and can introduce fine bubbles into it, making it appear misty.

Zest Twist. A fine strip cut from a citrus fruit, curled around a stirrer and dropped into the drink, or set on the rim.

Michael's Bartending Course

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