The Best Types of Shaker for Home Bartenders of Any Skill Level

  • By: BT Staff
  • Date: January 20, 2024
  • Time to read: 9 min.
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Whether you’re a budding home bartender or an experienced professional, understanding the different types of shaker is crucial in creating that perfect cocktail. Read on as we delve into the diverse world of cocktail shakers, exploring everything from the versatile Boston shaker to the sophisticated French design, to help you shake up your cocktail game!

Table of Contents

Best Cocktail Shakers at a Glance:

If you’re in a rush, here are the best cocktail shakers we found based on customer reviews and sales.

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Different Types of Cocktail Shakers – From Boston to Parisian

Let’s delve into the exciting world of cocktail shakers by exploring the various types available, from the popular Boston to the elegant Parisian style. Whether shaking drinks for a large gathering or mixing cocktails for a quiet night in, the right shaker is a critical bar tool that can make all the difference.

Boston Cocktail Shaker

A Bar Above Professional Boston Shakers Set - 18 oz & 28 oz Weighted Cocktail Shaker Set For Bartenders - Pro Bar Shaker Made from Premium Stainless Steel 304. Essential Bar Tools For Drink Making

A favourite among professional bartenders and enthusiasts alike, the Boston shaker is known for its simple, two-piece design: a large shaker tin and a smaller mixing glass tin. This Boston-style shaker offers a tight seal for vigorous shaking and is suitable for a wide range of cocktail recipes.

Bottom Line for Boston Shakers: While the Boston shaker might have a learning curve due to the need for a separate strainer, its versatility and easy cleaning make it a great choice for many home bartenders.

Cobbler Cocktail Shaker Sets

With its three-piece design, the cobbler shaker is user-friendly and often the first choice for home bartenders. Its built-in strainer and lid make it a standalone tool, perfect for whipping up one or two cocktails. Most Cobblers can be washed in a dishwasher too.

Bottom Line For Cobbler Shakers: While the cobbler shaker may not be the choice of professionals due to its smaller size and tendency to seal shut when the shaker melts, its user-friendly design makes it a favourite among beginner home bartenders.

Parisian or French Shakers

Viski Parisian Cocktail Shaker, Contoured High Shine Polished Stainless Steel with Built-In Cap and Strainer, Gold 25 Oz Set of 1

Combining the cobbler shaker’s elegance with the Boston’s simplicity, the Parisian shaker is an eye-catching addition to any home bar. This two-piece French shaker fit includes a large shaker tin and a lid, offering a larger capacity than your average cobbler shaker.

Bottom Line On the French Shaker: If aesthetics and functionality are what you’re looking for, the French shaker, with its easy use and elegant design, could be a top choice for your home bar.

Tin-on-Tin Shaker

Loved by many bartenders for its durability and lightweight, the tin-on-tin shaker is essentially a variant of the Boston shaker. This shaker tin setup includes two stainless steel shaker tins together, eliminating the risk of glass breakage.

Bottom Line for Tin-on-Tin Shakers: Though it may not have the aesthetic appeal of other shakers, its performance and durability make it a practical choice.

How Many Types of Cocktail Shakers Are There?

While we’ve covered the most common types, it’s interesting to note that numerous other types of shaker styles and variants exist worldwide. Antique copper shakers, Japanese-style jiggers, and glass shakers are just a few more you might encounter.

What Is the Capacity of a Shaker?

The capacity of a cocktail shaker can vary depending on its type and design. A Boston shaker, for instance, can accommodate more ingredients and ice, allowing you to make multiple drinks at once.

You can find shakers in various sizes, suitable for single-serving to serving a crowd. Opt for a small 12-ounce shaker if you’re planning a happy hour just for yourself. However, if you aim to craft cocktails for a crowd, choose a shaker with a capacity of at least 28 ounces.

Weight of a Cocktail shaker

The weight of your shaker can greatly impact the ease and comfort of use and the quality of your cocktails. Weighted shakers offer better balance and control, leading to a smoother, more efficient shake.

Things You Should Consider When Buying a Cocktail Shaker

Several factors should be considered when choosing the right shaker for your needs, from capacity and weight to material and type. Other shaker features to consider include whether the shaker has a built-in strainer, whether it can be washed in a dishwasher and its size.

How to Use a Cocktail Shaker

Using a shaker may seem straightforward, but there are tips and tricks to help you shake up a storm and make the most of your cocktail shaker.

How to Shake a Cocktail

The technique you use to shake a cocktail can greatly affect the final result, so it’s worth taking the time to learn the right method. After adding your cocktail ingredients, ice cubes, and securing the top, hold the shaker with both hands (one on top, one on bottom) and shake vigorously.

Strain the drink into a glass

Straining your drink is the final step in the cocktail-making process and is just as important as the shake itself. If your shaker has an integrated strainer, pour the drink into your cocktail glass. For shakers without a built-in strainer, like the Boston and tin-on-tin, you’ll need an additional tool, such as a Hawthorne strainer.

Best Cocktail Shakers – Recommendations

Now that we’ve covered the ins and outs of cocktail shakers let’s look at some of the top recommendations for the best cocktail shaker for any home bartender.

1 – Koriko Shaking Tins

Cocktail Kingdom® Koriko® Small Weighted Shaking Tin

Renowned for their quality and durability, the Koriko Shaking Tins are a great Boston Shaker option. This stainless steel tin-on-tin shaker is a favourite among many professional bartenders.

2 – OXO Cobbler Shaker

OXO Steel Single Wall Cocktail Shaker

For beginners looking for a comprehensive, user-friendly choice, the OXO Cobbler Shaker won’t disappoint. Its integrated strainer and markings for common measurements make it an excellent choice.

Cocktail Kingdom Leopold Weighted Shaking Tin Set

Cocktail Kingdom® Leopold® Weighted Shaking Tin Set - Stainless Steel

If weight and balance are priorities for you, consider the Cocktail Kingdom Leopold Weighted Shaking Tin Set. This weighted glass shaker top is great for efficiently shaking cocktails.

A Bar Above Two-Piece Craft Boston Shaker Set

A Bar Above Boston Cocktail Shaker Set – 4-Piece Stainless Steel Bartender Kit for Business or Home Bar – Includes Hawthorne Strainer & Japanese Jigger – Professional Bar Accessories

For a professional-grade Boston shaker, look no further than the A Bar Above Two-Piece Craft Boston Shaker Set. Its stainless steel shakers are sturdy and durable.

Jigger, Strainer, and Cocktail Shaker set

If you’re starting out and want a complete set, the Jigger, Strainer, and Cocktail Shaker set might be the best way to go. It’s a good shaker option with additional tools you’ll find useful.

Elevated Craft Hybrid Cocktail Shaker

Elevated Craft Hybrid Cocktail Shaker - Premium Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Cocktail Shaker - Innovative Measuring System - Martini Shaker for the Home Bartender - 28oz Total Volume

The Elevated Craft Hybrid Shaker sets itself apart with its innovative, all-in-one design. The shaker doubles as a mixing glass, and it also has a built-in strainer.

The Elan Collective French Cocktail Shaker Set

If you’re seeking a mix of functionality and aesthetics, The Elan Collective French Cocktail Shaker Set is worth a look. This Parisian shaker will add a touch of elegance to your bar cart.

Viski Parisian Cocktail Shaker Set

With its standout design, the Viski Parisian Cocktail Shaker Set will turn heads at your next cocktail party. Their French shakers are made from stainless steel, making them sturdy and long-lasting.

OXO Steel Cocktail Shaker

The OXO Steel Shaker is a cobbler-style stainless steel shaker with a sleek design. It’s dishwasher-safe, a bonus for those who want an easy cleanup.

Piña Barware Stainless Steel Commercial Hawthorne Strainer

The Piña Barware Stainless Steel Strainer is a must-have tool if you’re using a Boston or Tin-on-Tin shaker. It fits snugly over the shaker and efficiently strains out ice and fruit pulp.

Urban Bar Cocktail Set

The Urban Bar Cocktail Set is a comprehensive kit for any budding professional bartender. It includes a Boston Shaker, a Hawthorne strainer, a jigger, a mixing glass, and a bar spoon.

Conclusion: Shaken Not Stirred – The Key to Great Cocktails

The journey to becoming a home bartender is one filled with excitement and, of course, delicious cocktails. Understanding the differences among the types of shakers, the best cocktail shaker, and how to use them can significantly elevate your cocktail-making game, leading you to create stunning and flavorful drinks that rival those made by professional bartenders.

Frequently Asked Questions About Shakers

Here are some questions we found people usually ask about using shakers.

Can I use a cocktail shaker for non-alcoholic drinks?

Absolutely! Cocktail shakers can mix any type of drink, alcoholic or not.

Can I put my cocktail shaker in the dishwasher?

This depends on the type of shaker. Some, like most cobbler shakers, are dishwasher safe. However, others may require hand washing.

How often should I replace my cocktail shaker?

The longevity of your cocktail shaker will depend on its quality and how well it’s cared for. Some high-quality shakers can last for years if maintained properly.

What’s the difference between shaking and stirring a cocktail?

Shaking is typically used when a cocktail includes juice, cream, or egg whites. Stirring is used for spirit-heavy cocktails and mixing drinks where clarity is desired.

Do I need a different shaker for different types of cocktails?

While some types of shakers may be better suited to certain cocktails, a high-quality, versatile shaker should handle a wide range of cocktail recipes.

How many types of shakers are there?

There are numerous cocktail shakers, but the most commonly used are the Boston shakers, Cobbler, French (or Parisian), and Tin-on-Tin shakers. However, there are many more styles and variants worldwide, each with unique features and appeal.

What is the difference between a cobbler shaker and a Parisian shaker?

While the cobbler shakers and Parisian shakers feature an elegant design and are user-friendly, the main difference lies in their structure. A cobbler shaker (also called a three piece cocktail shaker or standard shaker) with a built-in strainer and a lid, while a Parisian shaker, also known as a French shaker, is a two-piece shaker that includes a large shaker tin and a lid but lacks a built-in strainer.

What is special about a cocktail shaker?

A cocktail shaker is special because it is an essential tool for making a wide variety of mixed drinks, whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic. It allows for thorough mixing of ingredients while also enabling the chilling, dilution, and aeration of the drink – all key factors in cocktail recipe for creating a delicious and well-balanced cocktail.

How do you shake a cocktail in a shaker?

After adding your cocktail ingredients and ice to the shaker, secure the top. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on top, one on the bottom), and shake vigorously for around 10-15 seconds or until the outside of the shaker becomes frosted. The aim is to properly mix and chill the ingredients while simultaneously diluting the drink slightly.

Is a cocktail shaker used for mixing ingredients?

Yes, a shaker is primarily used for mixing cocktail ingredients. It is handy for making cocktails from recipes that include fruit juices, cream, or egg whites, which must be thoroughly mixed to achieve the right texture and flavour.

Where do you hit a cocktail shaker?

To break the seal after shaking a Boston shakers or tin-on-tin shaker, you should hit the side of the shaker where the mixing glass or smaller tin meets the larger tin. A firm tap should be enough to break the seal.

Which type of shaker is a common choice for home bartenders and beginners?

The Cobbler shaker is a common choice for home bartenders and beginners due to its user-friendly design. It’s a three-piece shaker with a built-in strainer and cap, simplifying the process for those new to cocktail-making.

What is the most common cocktail shaker?

The most common cocktail shaker is the Cobbler shaker, primarily due to its ease of use and all-in-one design, making it a popular choice among beginners and home bartenders.

What size cocktail shaker should I buy?

The size of the shaker you should buy depends on your specific needs. If you often make cocktails for multiple people at once, you might want a larger shaker, such as a Boston shaker. If you usually make one or two drinks at a time, a Cobbler or French shaker might be sufficient.

How do you use a cocktail shaker and strainer?

Start by adding your ice and ingredients into the shaker tin. Use the smaller cup or pint glass if using a Boston shaker. After adding your ingredients and ice to the shaker and shaking vigorously, you’ll need to strain the cocktail if you’re using a two-piece shaker. Place the strainer over the shaker, and pour the cocktail into your glass. The strainer will catch any ice or solid ingredients.

Do you put ice in a cocktail shaker?

Yes, you put ice in your shaker and add ice just before shaking. The ice serves to chill, dilute, and aerate the cocktail, crucial steps in creating a balanced and tasty drink.

What is the difference between a cocktail shaker and a Boston shaker?

A “cocktail shaker” is a generic term for any device used to mix cocktail ingredients. A Boston shaker is a specific type of shaker consisting of a large shaker tin and a smaller mixing glass or tin.

Which type of shaker is best?

What the best cocktail shaker type is depends on your preferences and needs. A Boston shaker is a great choice for versatility and volume, while a Cobbler shaker is ideal for beginners due to its ease of use. A French shaker offers a blend of style and function, and a Tin-on-Tin shaker is a favourite among many professional bartenders.