How to Garnish Cocktails with Flair

Learn how to garnish cocktails with flair from mixologist / flair bartender Chris Cardone in this Howcast video.

Hi, I’m Chris Cardone from the Beatrice Inn. I’m going to teach you how to garnish with flair.

Garnishing is so important because it’s the last thing the customer’s going to remember. It’s like the climax of the movie, it’s the final straw right before you give the customer the drink, and it’s going to leave a lasting impression. So to do all this crazy bottle and tin work, make all these crazy drinks, and then you just drop a lemon into their drink. It just kind of loses, and it’s anti-climatic, and it’s not that much fun. So I’m going to show you how to garnish with flair.

So we’ll pretend that this is a full drink of something, whatever that may be, and we’ll take our lemon. Now the way we’re going to do this, you’re going to take your lemon, you’re going to squeeze it into the drink, and then we’re going to throw it from behind our back and catch it in the drink or in our other hand. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to take our lemon, we’re going to squeeze, we’re going to bring it around our back, we’re going to throw it over our left shoulder, and into our drink.

Now the key to this is the release point. So when you come around your back, you want to go to your opposite butt check, and you’re going to release, and you’re going to kind of throw it up towards the sky. That way it has kind of a target to go up and it will go in your drink. So one more time to show you, we’re going to squeeze it, throw it around, catch it in our drink, and give it to our guest.

Now, if you’re wondering about those friendly health department people, they always expect you to have tongs, so no sweat. We throw it behind our back, we catch it in our drink, and now the health department’s happy with us, too. And that’s how we flair with the garnish.