Impress your guests and friends by learning how to make party cocktails. No matter which cocktail drink recipes you choose, our simple tips for making party drinks will give you the bartending confidence you need to host your own cocktail party.
Most cocktail drinks consist of four basic parts. Whether you are making margaritas, martinis, daiquiris, or other popular cocktails and mixed drinks, each element makes a different contribution to a drink's flavor.
Basic cocktail components:
Basic cocktail recipe:
In general, the base is the first ingredient placed in a glass, shaker, or pitcher. Add the modifiers, accents, and ice to the container; shake or stir as the drink recipe requires. Add garnishes to the finished cocktail just before serving.
Don't know how much to make? Get our free Beverage Quantity Guide.
There are three main ways to mix cocktail drinks: shaking, blending, and muddling. With these easy drink-mixing techniques mastered, you can create all kinds of signature party drinks.
Shaking the cocktail ingredients with five or six large ice cubes incorporates water and softens the alcohol edge of your cocktail, resulting in a well-balanced mixed drink. Shake for 10-20 seconds, and use fresh ice for every batch.
Blending yields frozen party cocktails with unbeatable fresh fruit flavor and a smooth texture. The basic ingredients are fruit, liquor, and ice. When making blended drinks, such as our Lime Daiquiris or Ginger-Peach Margaritas, remember to blend the liquor, juices, and fruit before adding ice. You can also use crushed ice.
Muddling a cocktail means slightly bruising fruits, herbs, or zests to bring out essential oils and bold flavor. For the best results, use a drink muddler, or long pestle, and twist herbs and fruit to extract oils. Look for a heavy, flat-bottomed wood muddler, but you can also use the end of a wooden spoon.
Having a few cocktail ingredients on hand means you can quickly mix up memorable party drinks for guests.