How to make cocktails

How to use a three-piece cocktail shaker

Words by Simon Difford

Three-piece shakers are also called ‘Standard' or 'Cobbler' shakers, they comprise of three sections:
1) Flat-bottomed, conical base or 'can'
2) Built-in strainer mid-section
3) Top cap or lid which seals the shaker

In 1872, the first patent for a cobbler-style three-piece shaker was granted in the United States. It is the style of shaker preferred by Japanese bartenders and practitioners of the hard shake due to the shakers relatively small capacity so the limited travel of the ingredients and ice inside the shaker.

Three-piece shakers with built-in strainers are slower to use and pour more slowly than two-piece shakers, especially if the drink being poured contains muddled fruit. However, we recommend this style of shaker for home, non-professional use due to its ease of use.

How to use a three-piece cocktail shaker

1. Combine all ingredients in the base of the shaker.

2. Fill two-thirds full with ice.

3. Place the top and cap firmly on the base.

4. Pick up the closed shaker with one hand on the top, securing the cap, and the other gripping the bottom, and shake vigorously. The cap should always be on the top when shaking and should point away from guests.

5. After shaking briskly for around 15 seconds, lift off the cap, hold the shaker by its base with one finger securing the top and pour the drink through the built-in strainer.

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