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Cocktail 101: How To Use A Cocktail Muddler

An essential bar tool, the muddler is a key tool in making cocktails like the mojito. A bartenders Pestle, the muddler is an easy tool to master. Using a muddler you can quickly and easily incorporate fresh fruit and herbs into a cocktail.

How to Choose Your Muddler

Muddlers are come in different sizes and are made from different materials. A muddler is usually 6 to 8 inches long and is the perfect size to reach the bottom of a mixing glass or Boston tin.

Wooden Muddlers

The most common muddler you will see in bars is a wooden muddler. Bartenders prefer wooden muddlers as they are durable and versatile. As well as muddling ingredients, a wooden muddler can also crack ice cubes into smaller pieces. The only drawback to a wooden muddler is that they need a little bit more care and attention. Wooden muddlers can't go in the dishwasher and need cleaning immediately otherwise berries and fruit may stain the wood.

Plastic and Steel Muddlers

In recent years plastic and stainless steel muddlers have become more popular. Often they have small teeth on the end that mashes ingredients quicker and they are great for extracting the juice out of berries. The other advantage they have is that they are easier to clean as they can be put in a dishwasher. Wooden muddlers do run the risk or growing mould or containing bacteria.

Which one should I choose?

This depends on what drinks you want to make, and your personal preference. If you want a tool that is a little more versatile, the wooden muddler is a better choice. But if you want something that is easy to care for, then a plastic or metal muddler might be the better choice.

How to use a muddler

The point of muddling isn't to smash the ingredients into a messy pulp but to gently release the flavours and essence. For herbs, you want to remember that you extracting the essential oils, and for fruit, you are extracting the juice.

Step 1. Place your chosen ingredients into a mixing glass Step 2. Gently press down on the ingredients using the muddler and gently turn 3. Repeat this motion until the ingredients are gently muddled. It will usually take about 4-6 turns

Top Tips

Don't muddle your ingredients in a plastic container. Plastic is prone to splitting under light pressure. Muddle the ingredients before adding ice into the mixing glass or cocktail shaker.