Shaken vs. Stirred: What’s the Difference?

clear martini with olives

If you’ve seen a Bond film, then you know exactly how agent 007 prefers his cocktail to be made. 

Shaken, not stirred. 

Most casual patrons may not entirely understand the differences in preparation and taste that make these two methods of creating the cocktail unique. In today’s blog, we explain the difference between shaken vs. stirred cocktails. Near the bottom, we also have a popular recipe for the classic Vesper cocktail. 

Shaken Vs. Stirred: What’s the Difference?

When it comes to shaken and stirred cocktails, the main difference is in how each method changes the temperature and texture. A shaken cocktail will bring the drink to a closer ice-cold temperature, while the stirred cocktail will simply chill the mixture. 

When a cocktail is shaken, the ice aerates the drink with small air bubbles, which become held in suspension with the liquid, thus giving the cocktail a very mixed and cloudy appearance. Stirring a cocktail does not allow the cocktail ice to aerate the drink, making the finished product crystal clear. 

Another defining characteristic of stirred cocktails is how the amount of dilution is minimized, which allows a balanced concentration of spirits within your beverage. Shaken cocktails create a different type of balance; with more dilution, flavor and alcohol become perfectly mixed. 

Which Drinks Should Be Shaken or Stirred?

Common drinks that we suggest you serve shaken include: 

  • Margarita
  • Daiquiri
  • Cosmopolitan

Mixology experts recommend that any beverage containing fruit juice, sour mix, eggs, or dairy products should be shaken. 

Some drinks we recommend you serve stirred, examples include:

  • Manhattan
  • Negroni
  • Old Fashioned 

In general, cocktails that require clear ingredients should be served stirred…unless you are James Bond, of course. We theorize that he enjoyed his martini at an ice-cold temperature and slightly altered texture, making his martini well balanced and perfectly diluted. 

The Vesper Cocktail

Making its debut in 1953 within Ian Flemming’s book “Casino Royale”, the Vesper Martini was named after a famous double agent, Vesper Lynd. 

To make your own Vesper, you will need: 

  • 3 oz. gin
  • 1 oz. vodka
  • .5 oz. Lillet blanc aperitif
  • Lemon twist 

You will mix the gin, vodka, and Lillet blanc together in a mixing glass, and while experts suggest you stir the drink together, you can certainly feel like agent 007 and shake until chilled. 

To finish, you will strain the drink into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish it with a fresh lemon twist. 

The Spirit Ice Vice is James Bond Approved

We can confirm that the suave and sophisticated secret agent would have certainly approved of the Spirit Ice Vice, especially a diamond-shaped ice ball. Learn more about our product which has bars and restaurants all around the country taking their cocktails to the next level. 

Owners of Spirits On Ice

Meet the Owners of Spirits On Ice

Kent & Kim Coomer are the husband and wife team behind Spirits On Ice. The Coomers purchased D&E Machine Company in 1990 before turning it into Spirits On Ice, the manufacturer of the Spirit Ice Vice ice ball press. Kent’s background is in custom-machining items out of metal, while Kim has decades of management and relationship-building experience. Together, Kent and Kim engineer a high-quality machine that quickly and efficiently creates customizable ice balls for drinks. The ice ball delivers more than a clear way to chill a beverage. It provides an experience for your guests, whether at home, in a restaurant or bar, or at the 19th hole of the golf course.

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