Online Bartending Lesson 3: Bar Tools

Many of these tools can be found in a regular kitchen, but a bartender’s version will be specially crafted for mixing your drinks. Prior to starting every shift you should ensure that your tools are clean and available for use. Become proficient in the use of your bar tools and you will find the art of mixology much easier to master.

If you’re looking for a great set of bartending supplies for your home bar and to practice, then I highly recommend this set. They have rubber handles and are made of high quality stainless. You can’t get much better than this for the price.


A barspoon is handy for stirring Martinis as well as for layering drinks. They are extra long for taller glasses and usually have a spiral in the center. You can layer drinks by either softly pouring onto the spoon or by pouring down the spiral.


A heavy-duty one works the best for slushing ice and frozen fruit. This is a requirement for all successful bars especially ones that serve Margaritas and frozen Daiquiris.

Bottle Opener

These metal openers are made for speed. Use them for capped bottles.

Bottle Sealers

When you are finished using a bottle for the night and no longer have the cap, a bottle sealer will keep the alcohol fresh overnight and can be reused indefinitely.


There are two versions of a corkscrew you will encounter. Both are used for uncorking wine or champagne. The waiter’s version comes with a knife and pry bar used for removing foil from the bottle. The wingtype are usually easier for removing the cork, but do not have extra tools for taking off the foil.

Ice Scoop

Before every cocktail comes a fresh scoop of ice. Larger ice scoops work the best for preventing your from touching the ice with your hands. Be sure to always use a metal scoop to get the ice as you cannot serve ice touched by your hands or with broken glass. As a rule of thumb, NEVER use glass as a replacement for your scoop. When replacing the scoop back into the ice, be sure to leave the handle exposed so you only have to touch that part when you grab it for the next use.


The jigger is essentially a speed measurement tool that is made specifically for bartending. There is usually a larger side that measures 1 ½ ounces and a smaller side of ½ ounce, although the measurements come in all sizes.

Juicer and Extracter

juicer or reamer Juicers and citrus extractors help to extract as much juice as possible for cocktails. Adding this fresh ingredient to your drinks goes a long way in flavor and quality. Soaking fruit in hot water can also help with extracting them.

Mixing Glass

Mixing glasses are clear pint glasses bartenders use to combine several ingredients and also when ingredients need to be muddled.


MuddlerThis bartender’s version of pestle and mortar. The muddler is made of wood, plastic or even metal and is used to grind or crush ingredients for drinks such as a Mojito.

Shaker Tin

bar toolsThey come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some even have a strainer at the end which can be used to keep from pouring small chunks of ice into the drink. The most common way to use the shaker is to first add a good size scoop of ice, then pour the least expensive alcohol first so as to avoid making a mistake and wasting an expensive ingredient.

When you’ve added all of your ingredients, close the shaker with a glass or the opposite end of the tin and shake with short rapid back and forth movements to mix the drink and chill it at the same time. You can then pull apart the two ends of the shaker over a glass with just enough space for the liquid to pour into your serving glass without allowing ice chunks to fall. Here is our full guide on mastering the shaker.

Speed Pour Spouts

Most bars will use speed pour spouts for serving. They allow you to use a counting method to measure shots and make the process of pouring much more precise than other methods. Most spouts pour at an average speed of 4 counts per ounce, but make sure to test the speed of the spouts when you first begin serving at a new bar. You can use a jigger to test your counts.


cocktail strainerStrainers are usually accompanied with a shaker set. They allow the bartender to place the strainer over the end of the shaker and pour only liquid into the serving glass. A quality drink or shot will not have small chunks of ice or fruit unless the drink calls for it.


zesterThis tool, also known as a channel knife, allows you to beautifully zest citrus fruit by placing the sharp end on the outside of the fruit and applying pressure. When you get your desired length, release the zester then garnish the beverage. Simple yet effective. Here are some great zesters.

Continue on with the Bartending Lessons

Mixed Drink TerminologyBar Glassware

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