top of page

Why Are Cocktails Shaken?

Shaking a drink is not done simply because it's fun or flashy. There are excellent reasons why most cocktails are shaken. The general "shaken vs stirred" rule is to shake cocktails with nonalcoholic mixers, lots of flavors, or heavy ingredients, and the goal of shaking is to:

  • Thoroughly mix the drink's ingredients and create a unified flavor.

  • Aerate the cocktail for a lighter mouthfeel.

  • Give the drink a good chill.

  • Add enough dilution to knock the strength of the drink down, making it more pleasant to sip.

Some drinkers may argue against the last point because they prefer a stiff drink, but water serves a few purposes. After shaking, cocktails that are almost entirely made of alcohol (like most martinis) can easily be 20 percent to 30 percent ABV (40 to 60 proof). At that potency, two drinks can easily get some people rather tipsy. Undiluted, these can be like taking a four-ounce shot of liquor.

Additionally, many cocktails simply taste better with a little dilution. The water opens up the flavors, helps them blend into a single flavor, and tames the alcohol to create a more enjoyable drink. This is why many whiskey connoisseurs and experts add a splash of water when sipping whiskey straight.

Don't worry about over-diluting your drinks. That's far more likely to happen if it takes you longer than 30 minutes to finish a run and Coke. If you want a drink that gives you a shock, stick to shots. When you want a drink to experience, use your shaker.

4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page