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Spend Cocktail Hours Like An Expert

A bartender carefully preparing a cocktail


A round-up of cocktail jargons that will take you from an amateur to a pro in no time!.

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A cocktail menu can be intimidating to many: Fancy terms that seem like rocket science! Fret not, here are a few technical terms that will make you seem like a connoisseur the next time you are at a sundowner!

1. Fat washing: No, this is not someplace you can head to wash away a few extra kilos. Nor is this a process for getting bacon grease off your shirt! It’s actually a clever cocktail technique that adds savoury flavours to spirits.  In this technique, a spirit is infused with liquid fat—such as melted butter, duck/bacon fat or oil. The mixture is then added at room temperature before refrigerating it. Once the fat freezes on the surface, it’s then removed and discarded. Fat-washing gives your drink a unique flavour profile while also adding a rich, silky texture.

2. Muddle: The act of pressing herbs or fruit with a pestle, as with the mint used in the ever-popular Mojito. This brings out a concentrated and authentic taste of the herbs. Now you know!

3. Rinse: This one is easy. It does exactly what the word implies. Coating the inside of a cocktail glass with a thin layer of liquid (liqueurs, bitters, and other spirits), and then dumping out the excess. This way, you’ll get a hint of that ingredient without overpowering the rest. Sazerac (a whiskey or cognac cocktail) for example, has an absinthe rinse.

4. Up: Not the same as neat. It’s just a shaken or stirred cocktail served without ice, usually in a stemmed glass. The elevated structure of the glass inspired the term.

5. Infusion: The process of soaking an ingredient in a liquid, usually spirits or syrups. Infusions add a whole new variable to tweaked classics or provide scope for new innovative concoctions.

So, the next time you’re at the bar counter, order and drink up like an expert!


[Image Credit: Shutterstock]

Eva Pavithran

Vertical Head - Lifestyle