Cocktail Tips & Techniques P. 1: Stirring

This past week was Feast Portland, and we had the pleasure of hosting hands-on class at the Multnomah Whiskey Library with their head of curation, Jordan Felix. The class covered cocktail technique, focusing on three different stations: Built (think juleps), Shaken and Stirred.

Now that Feast is over, we wanted to share some of our class tips and recipes with you all. First up: Stirred.

Stirring Tips from Bull in China co-founder, Daniel Osborne

1.    In general, stirring as a technique is put in to practice when a specific drink consists of ingredients that are all spirit. It allows for more care to be taken to achieve the gentle balance of correct temperature and dilution. 

2.    There is no right or wrong bar spoon. Find the design that is the most comfortable for you personally. You can check out a variety of options that we sell on our website here.

3.    Always stir clockwise with your right hand, and counter-clockwise with your left hand. This allows for a more fluid and graceful movement.

4.    Fill your mixing glass with as much ice as possible, without it shooting out of the glass while stirring. More ice = more chill. Also, this will ensure your julep strainer has something substantial to rest on while straining your cocktail.

5.    Much like how different types and cuts of meat cook differently, and the ovens, grills, pots or pans play a roll in the desired outcome in cooking, so is the same with cocktail ingredients and the quality of ice you use. 

Put these tips to practice and stir up Daniel's Manhattan twist. 

Photo by Carly Diaz

Hard Bargain by Daniel Osborne, Bull in China

  • 2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon 
  • 1 oz L'Afrique Vermouth
  • 2 Dashes Aromatic Bitters (we love Portland Bitters Project)

Add ingredients into a mixing glass, and add ice. Stir for 10-15 seconds and strain into a chilled rocks or coupe. Garnish with an orange peel.