Tuesday, October 24, 2017
David Eden-Sangwell, brand activation executive, Catalyst PLB, Midlands
I’ve always been a fan of free pouring. To me, it’s one of the skills that every bartender should have in their arsenal, regardless of whether they choose to use it behind their bar every day. Yes, it’s something that takes dedication and practice to do well and consistently, but that’s kind of why I like it.
For me, a jigger is an additional barrier between myself and the guest I’m taking care of. It slows service, especially on multiple spirit cocktails where a free-pouring bartender could easily be grabbing and pouring two or more bottles at once, and enjoying interaction with their guests at the same time.
Erik Lorincz, head bartender, American Bar at The Savoy, London
I used to do quite a lot of free pouring when I started bartending about 17 years ago, but that was a long time ago and since then lots of things have progressed.
Today, I can’t imagine free pouring, apart from a cup of tea. As standard practice at our bar, we measure using a jigger. I don’t find it old fashioned at all. It’s no longer old school or old fashioned, it’s just a way of judging the final results of a drink, and at the end you want it to be a fantastic result.
What is important here is not the way we make those drinks, it’s how they taste. Some bartenders think that free pouring looks very cool, it seems fast but at the same time if you learn how to work fast with the jigger, it can be equally as fast.
The main benefit of using a jigger is consistency – when free pouring some bartenders use some sort of counting, but some don’t count at all and just look at how much they are pouring into the shaker. But if the bartender is jiggering or using a measuring cup, the same quantities will be used and the drink will taste exactly the same each time.