If you’re a cocktail drinker, the odds are good that you’ve heard the term “craft cocktails” floating around recently. It’s such a hot phrase that you also might not know exactly what it means, since it is getting added to menus without a lot of explanation. “Craft cocktails” are cocktails where every element is handmade or tailored specifically to the drink. You will see drinks served in custom glassware, poured over custom ice cubes, mixed with house-made syrups and finished with a dash of small-batch bitters. You might see traditional spirits used, but you also might see unexpected barrel-aged liquors that are prepared by bartenders and other unusual flavor combinations. Whether simple or complex, the results are cocktails that are made with a lot more care than your usual mixed drinks and deliver a much more satisfying experience.
The process of making craft cocktails is a lot like that of the artisan food movement, focusing on flavor, high quality ingredients and taking your time in order to do those ingredients justice.