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How to Chill Glassware for Cocktails and Mixed Drinks

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Chilled Glass

Chilled Glass

Photo Credit: © Christopher Woods

One of the keys to making great cocktails is to match the glass temperature to the drink: cold drinks go in frozen glasses, hot drinks go in warm glasses. By using a chilled glass, your cocktails will stay crisp and cool longer and adds aesthetics to the final presentation. I recommend frosting all highball and cocktail glasses, even if you only do a quick chill. You will never regret using a chilled glass.

There are three common ways to chill glassware...

Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 5 minutes- 3 hours

Here's How:

  1. Freeze It: Put the glasses in the freezer for a couple of hours or the refrigerator for 3-4 hours. Take the glasses out just before you pour the drink. If space allows and you want to ensure that you have a chilled glass on hand, designate a spot to store at least some of your glasses in permanently and ensure they return there after cleaning.

    *This method is the preferred way to chill because the glass will stay cold longer.

  2. Ice Bucket: If a refrigerator is not available, fill an ice bucket with ice and plunge the bowl of the glass upside down into the ice. Leave this sit for 15-30 minutes for a really good chill.

  3. Quick Chill: If you cannot chill a glass using either of those two methods, fill the glass with cracked or crushed ice and swirl it around. Allow this to sit while you mix the drink. Dump the ice and pour the drink in the glass.

    The swirling works well with cocktail glasses, chilling to the rim. For highball, old-fashioned and collins glasses fill them to the brim with ice for a few minutes and then dump the ice.

    *This is a good quick step to do for glasses that you have chilled with either of the above methods to ensure the chill lasts.

What You Need

  • Glassware
  • Freezer or Refrigerator
  • Ice Cubes
  • Ice Bucket
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