The Mixing of Drinks

By Sharmini Jayawardena 

6th February 2023

I have always had an affinity for mixing drinks. Let’s just say, having poured a number of different liquors into a glass, gulped it all down, then immediately having got sick, at a party hosted by my dad for his friends, when I was only four, was a good place to start  !!!

As I venture into the mixing of drinks, here’s what I’ve chanced upon lately: a four piece stainless steel cocktail set consisting of a three piece cocktail shaker, (I have been eyeing this fascinating bit of equipment for a long time). Hawthorne strainer, muddler and jigger. This procurement is basic cocktail equipment that will enrich every beginner’s journey in the science and the art of mixing drinks.

My first gimlet and gin and lemon are created and I’m hungering for more inspiration as I publish my book of poems and find poetry tallying closely with the mixing of drinks. Let’s say it is a poetic endeavour, this mixing of drinks. There’s definitely a certain poesy involved in the mixing of drinks, may it be in the balance achieved in the flavour or the rhythm of the mixing itself that creates dimension.

I’ve made eggnog and Baileys during this season and hope to make Kahlua soon, and found it differs from the actual mixing of alcohol, syrups and carbonated toppings with a mixer for each cocktail, rounded off with delightful garnishes.  Although you can make cocktails from Kahlua by adding milk or cream and cola to it like when making a Colorado Bulldog, or a White Russian or a Sombrero. You can add Baileys to your coffee, tea or hot chocolate.

It is such an exciting, fun and endearing way to make your guests and loved ones happy, way after happy hour is done and dusted or should I say, dusked ? 🙂

My Cocktail Set
The Bombay Sapphire in my cellar

I made a lime simple syrup by mixing one part castor sugar and one part lime juice in a thick bottomed pan and stirring with a wooden spoon while slowly bringing it to a solution, removing it from the fire and leaving it to cool. 

I made lime juice instead of lime cordial, with the juice of one lime, water and sugar to taste.

I grabbed the shaker, added two parts Gin, one part lime juice and one part prepared lime simple syrup and gave it a good shake. I then poured it through the Hawthorn strainer over one large ice cube into a short glass and sank two frozen slices of lime in it. 

It hit my head immediately 😂  A picture of which will follow. I mean of the Gimlet and not of tipsy me 🤣 Does all of this mixing mean I’m going to be drunk silly at all times ?! Let’s hope not 😄

Here it is. My gimlet.

“The in-depth knowledge needed to create new cocktail recipes is the main difference between a mixologist and a bartender.”

Here’s how to choose a tool kit of equipment to mix your drinks from a beginner’s kit to that of the most advanced of mixologists

On a different note, I hope to venture into making fruit wines like pineapple and beetroot and possibly milk wine. These are homemade efforts at distilling the liquor or the spirit itself from the beginning. It definitely is different from mixing already existing ingredients with already distilled liquors.

Here’s some drink for thought:

“What Are The 4 Components That Balance All Cocktails?

There are four key components to making a well-balanced cocktail: spirits, sugar, water and bitters. Each element plays an important role in creating a delicious drink”

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