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10 Classic cocktails every bartender should know how to make

Do you remember the classic cocktails? Nowadays more bartenders create exotic cocktails with unusual names to grab the interest of customers. But there will always be the classics that people can never forget. As a bartender, you need to be able to make all of these drinks. Here are the classic cocktails every bartender should know.



Thanks to the rising popularity of rum, Mojito continues to be a popular drink. Even though the directions make it simple to make, there is an art to making a really good Mojito cocktail. It's all about getting a perfect balance between rum, sugar and mint.


Add a couple of lime wedges and two teaspoons of sugar into a glass. Add sprigs of mint and half a glass of crushed ice. Then add and mix one part white rum and two parts soda. Once mixed, add more ice and mint to fill the glass.



Sex On The Beach

Sex on the Beach is a fruity and colourful brew. Combined with Vodka and Peach Schnapps, some bartenders like to add a variety of different fruits to give it an extra bite.


However if you want to go for the classic Sex On The Beach all you need is Vodka, Peach Schnapps, orange juice and cranberry juice. Add all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker, shake and then pour into a glass of ice.    



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Gin and Tonic

Gin has come back into fashion and with the increasing number of gin bars opening around the country, we think gin will be on most bartender menus for a long while. It's a popular drink for summer and you might think it's an easy drink to make but it's important to get it right.


Add one part gin into a glass, fill with fresh ice and then fill the glass to the top with tonic water. Squeeze a couple of lemon and lime wedges into the drink and then add a fresh lime wedge before stirring.



Old Fashioned

Despite it's name, this ol' drink is still in fashion. A popular choice for whiskey drinkers or if you fancy a slow cocktail to sip on, the Old Fashioned is a smooth option.


Get your mixing glass and add: whiskey, white sugar cubes, Angostura bitters and cold water. Stir until the sugar is broken down. Fill the glass with ice and stir again. Strain the drink into a glass filled with ice. Finish off by adding slices of lemon and orange peel.



Pina Colada

Nothing like a cool Pina Colada on a hot summer beach. Combined with rum, pineapple and coconut cream, this is a delicious brew.


To make a classic Pina Colada, fill a blender with chunks of pineapple, teaspoon of sugar, coconut cream, white rum, fresh pineapple juice and ice. Blend the cocktail and pour into a chilled glass. Add a straw and a pineapple triangle for garnish.



Long Island Iced Tea

This is a great cocktail to start with on a night out but you only need to order one. The Long Island Iced Tea is a strong cocktail with a complementary combination of spirits.


Take a tall glass and fill it with gin, white rum, tequila, vodka, triple sec and some syrup. Leave some space to add cola and a lemon wedge.




With a sweet and sour taste, the margarita is a strong tequila based cocktail. It is a popular choice for customers going out on a Saturday night. 


Start by running a piece of lime around the rim of a small glass and then dip the rim in salt. Using a cocktail shaker, mix tequila, Cointreau and lime juice. Make sure you shake well and then fill the shaker with ice and shake well. Add fresh ice to the glass and then strain the margarita into the glass. You can garnish with an extra lime to serve.  



Bloody Mary

The Bloody Mary is an iconic drink which is rich in ingredients and flavour. Some people like to consider it as a hangover cure because it's full of nutrition (and alcohol). 


Take a glass and rub a juicy lemon (or lime) wedge along the rim. Roll the rim into a pinch of celery salt until the glass lip is covered with salt. Fill the glass with ice and put it aside for the moment.  Take a cocktail shaker and squeeze a lemon and lime wedge into it. Add Vodka, tomato juice, Tabasco sauce, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce and a pinch of paprika and black pepper. Add ice and then shake the mix together. Then strain into your prepared celery salt rimmed glass.





A very sophisticated drink for elegant occasions, the martini is a popular choice. It was certainly made a classic, thanks to James Bond 007. 


For a Dry Martini, you only need a few ingredients. Add gin, vermouth and a dash of orange into a mixing glass. Filling the glass with ice and stir. Once it's cold, strain into a cocktail glass. Decorate the rim with a lemon twist.




To end our list of classic cocktails every bartender should know, we have the Cosmopolitan.


Fill a cocktail shaker with crushed ice, add Vodka, orange liqueur, and add cranberry and lime juice. Then shake. Strain the drink into a martini glass and finish with a twist of lime peel. 


Making these top ten classic cocktails is an essential skill for all bartenders, especially if you want to get extra tips.



Slip-resistant work shoes for bartenders

At Shoes For Crews (Europe) Ltd., our slip-resistant work shoes are designed for bartenders. The interior soles provide comfort and support whilst the impressive slip-resistant outsoles provide excellent grip on slippery floor surfaces. Every bartender should be dressed in the right uniform for work to avoid suffering an injury.



Executive Wing Tip III - smart, classic slip-resistant shoe for bartenders





Preparing for an interview?

We've created the crucial guide for bartenders which has all the common interview questions (and example answers).




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