Hack your Hathorne!
Top tips from behind the bar
A good cocktail strainer is a must-have in your home bar arsenal! Unlike the colander-style julep strainer, a Hawthorne strainer has it’s distinctive coiled spring to trap large chunks of ice and other solids when pouring your cocktail of choice to serve.
An indespensible tool when shaking or stirring, the Hawthorne strainer easily fits onto most shakers and mixing glasses with tabs and internal coil able to compress for a snug fit. If you only have one piece of bar equipment, this would be the one to reach for.
Here are some of our top tips to level up your cocktail game at home.
1 . MIND THE GAP
When straining, use your fingers to keep a forward tilt on the strainer to close the gap between the top metal face and the edge of the shaker or mixing glass. This ensures that the drink passes through the coils and out of the inner holes to catch any pesky ice shards or fruit chunks. It might feel a bit awkward to start with – practice makes perfect.
2. DON’T RUSH
Slow and steady when you pour into your serving glass. No need to tip the thing upside down unless you want your cocktail to be sputtering out in every direction! Slowly and gradually increase the angle of your pour to ensure you have a nice, controlled stream. Give a last quick jolt downwards to coax any last drops through the ice, and smoothly return upright to prevent dribbles.
3. TAKE IT UP A NOTCH
Don’t be afraid to double strain. Often you’ll see cocktail recipes calling for a double strain into your chilled serving glass. While the odd fruit chunk or fleck of mint leaf won’t affect the taste of your cocktail from a single strain, for the ultimate clarity and texture in your cocktail, reach for an extra strainer. If you have a tea strainer hanging around in the kitchen drawer, give this a go and notice the difference!
4. PULL IT APART
At the end of your cocktail making session – and before you sit down to savour your tipple – give the cocktail shaker and strainer a quick rinse in the sink. No one enjoys scrubbing off dried bits of fruit pulp on utensils!
When you do get around to the dishes, simply gather and slide the slinky-like coil off the main plate of the strainer, clean and reattach when dry.