Behind the Bar with Asprey
Since the golden age of cocktails in the 1920s and ’30s, Asprey has been designing unique barware pieces to enhance and elevate the cocktail experience. Discover the essential pieces for creating the perfect barware collection.
The cocktail: an alcoholic beverage mixed with bitters, sugars, spirits and a wide assortment of flavorings, juices and liqueurs. The concept is simple, but the possibilities are seemingly endless. However, the classics — like the Martini, the Old Fashioned and the Sidecar — remain timeless favorites of all generations, and there’s no better way to enjoy the experience than with quality barware.
British luxury goods purveyor’s Asprey sets its barware apart from others with quality craftsmanship, creativity and unique designs. The newest addition is an Art Deco-inspired custom drink trolley. Made exclusively for The Ritz-Carlton, it has a vintage look with a decidedly modern feel. This trolley, and every piece added to its collection, undergoes careful consideration — it must not only be special, but also complement its companions. Made with premium materials, crystal or silver, Asprey works with the most talented artisans to bring its designs to fruition. Its silver cocktail shakers and barware are handcrafted in Asprey’s own workshop, above its London flagship store, while the eco-friendly and lead-free crystal is produced in the Czech Republic, long celebrated for its quality glassworks.
For the ultimate barware set up, Asprey recommends starting with essentials. First, chose a unique shaker for your centerpiece. Its signature Tell Me How cocktail shaker shows how to make eight classic cocktails, including the Asprey Violet Martini. As you turn the outer sleeve, the clever design reveals a new cocktail recipe.
For glassware, two of Asprey’s most popular designs are the hand-cut Crosshatch and the whimsical, yet stately Octopus, with tentacles hand-engraved using the traditional copper-wheel method. Once you’ve selected your style, it’s time to create your collection with three types of glassware: the tumbler, the high ball and the champagne flute.
Also known as the lowball, the tumbler is a short glass that holds about 6 to 8 ounces of fluids. It’s the perfect shape for a neat pour of your favorite spirit — especially aged dark liquors such as bourbon, scotch and whiskey. The sturdy base makes it excellent for muddling ingredients within the glass, a technique used to make the classic Old Fashioned. Other well-known cocktails served in a lowball include the scotch and soda, Black Russian, Negroni and Sazerac.
The high ball is a glass that is twice as tall as its diameter and holds about 8 to twelves ounces of liquid. The shape leaves plenty of room for ice — great for mixed drinks that possess a larger portion of a non-alcoholic mixer to a smaller pour of a spirit. A popular cocktail served in a high ball is the refreshing Tom Collins, a mixture of gin, lemon juice, sugar and filled to the brim with ice and carbonated water.
The champagne flute’s iconic design is synonymous with everyone’s celebratory beverage of choice, champagne. Like a wine glass, its long stem lets you hold the glass to keep the drink nice and chilled. And to keep those bubbles bubbly, the elongated inward taper of the glass and minimal exposed surface area helps retain carbonation and also enhances taste.
For a third barware piece, an ice bucket makes an excellent choice, especially for those who prefer their drinks “on the rocks.” Accessories such as tongs, a mixing glass, bottle opener, spirit measurer and a decanter can all be found in the Asprey collection.
From shakers shaped like race cars and rockets to elegant crystal decanters adorned with animal shapes, Asprey’s barware embodies elegance and wit. Because not only should a cocktail taste delicious — it should also look great.
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