Mixology 101

 

Cocktails are fun, colorful and delicious drinks to have at any special event, especially your wedding. They add extra flare and flavorful uniqueness to your dream day, especially when a talented mixologist shakes up your drinks perfectly each time. And in recent years, the demand for mixologists is on the rise. World Bride Magazine sat down with the founder of Creative Cocktail Consultants at MyMixologist.com, Brian Van Flandern, one of the greatest cocktail-making mixologists in the country.

Creative Cocktail Consultants at MyMixologist.com is a global beverage consulting firm. Flandern is one of the few mixologists in the world who not only teaches spirit education and mixology training to bar staffs for the best restaurants, hotels and resorts in the world, but also teaches Michelin Beverage Standards. While having multiple achievements and awards, including being formally ranked Number 2 in the world, named “America’s Top Mixologist” by Food Network and mixing drinks for celebrities like Kate Hudson and Kurt Russell, Flandern is very modest and sincere.

“At the end of the day, I’m just a bartender who loves to make a really good tasting drink,” he says.

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Starting in New York and London in 2004, a “Cocktail Revolution” exploded globally with craft cocktail lounges appearing in every major city and many minor cities all over the world.

“What we’re seeing now is the new golden age of the cocktail as bartenders are starting to emulate the great chefs…only in the last ten years has this culinary art form re-emerged and is becoming more and more popular,” Flandern explains. He says that people are tasting these cocktails, such as the popular punch bowl cocktail, and want to hire a master mixologist who can create the perfect cocktail every single time at their big event.

Anyone can follow a recipe, but the key to making the perfect cocktail lies in properly balancing the acid, sugar and alcohol components of the drink. This requires tasting it and adjusting it, making sure it is not too sweet or too tart and has the right amount of alcohol. Fresh ingredients and flavorful, quality spirits are also crucial to making the perfect drink.

“What a mixologist does that most consumers don’t know how to do is take that simple concept and batch it on a large scale for all your wedding guests, so every single one of your wedding guests gets the exact perfect tasting cocktail that you tasted during your tasting,” he says. Just like caterers for your wedding, mixologists offer tastings to match the bride and groom’s specific interests and tastes in  glassware, quality spirits, garnish and more so that they can have the perfect signature drink on their special day. Even better, their services are reasonably priced, starting at $2,500. This includes a phone consultation, a tasting and his presence and batching on the day of the event.

I was curious about the process to coming up with a signature drink so Flandern created my own signature drink. In honor of my beloved and I, the drink is called “The JW” and features one of my favorite spirits, tequila. I tried it out and absolutely loved it! Feel free to taste it yourself. And if you are looking for the perfect cocktail for your big day, Creative Cocktail Consultants at MyMixologist.com is the place to go!

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“The JW”

1 ½ oz. Don Julio Blanco Tequila

½ oz. agave nectar

½ oz. fresh squeezed lime juice

1 oz. POM pomegranate juice

½ oz. club soda

5 mint leaves

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Preparation:

-Put all ingredients except soda into mixing tin

-Muddle fresh mint until leaves thoroughly bruised

-Add large ice cubes

-Shake vigorously

-Add club soda

-Tumble roll 1 time to mix

-Taste for balance

-Strain into high ball glass over fresh ice

-Garnish with big sprig of fresh mint and serve

Megan Jander

Megan Jander is a graduate from Penn State University with a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism and an English minor. She is an Editorial Assistant and writer for WBM and Keep It Moving With Marsha Jews and a Junior Account Representative for MLM Represents. She is also a volunteer writer and editor for P.A.L.M. Magazine. She has strong interests in a variety of fields, especially environmental sciences, and hopes to gain as much experience as possible for a bright future.

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