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Why Does My Cocktail Shaker Leak?

So, you’ve got yourself a cocktail shaker for your home bar and you’re ready to start mixing up drinks like the home bartender you desire to be.

Maybe you’re ready to start making that martini or that gin fizz, and then the next thing you know your hands are covered in liquid.

Yup, your cocktail shaker is leaking and your hands are covered in the proof.

Now, what? you think to yourself.

So, you open it and close it, thinking that maybe you just didn’t have it closed properly.

You start shaking those drink ingredients again just to have the same damn problem as the first time.

Now you’ve ended up here looking for solutions.

So, let’s dig in, shall we?

You Get What You Pay For

First things first – did you buy a cheap cocktail shaker, or did you buy the best cocktail shaker on the market?

The old saying that you get what you pay for rings as true for cocktail shakers as it does for anything else.

So, if you decided to cheap out, then you may be able to easily solve your problem by upgrading to a better quality cocktail shaker.

Simple solution, but it just might work.

Seriously, do yourself a favor and just buy a good Boston Shaker for the best results.

It’s Too Cold

In practice, cocktail shakers work without leaking because as you’re shaking those drink ingredients, it is cooling the metal of the shaker.

And the cooling of the metal works to temporarily shrink it, which tightens the seal.

But if you’re making more than one drink, then after the first one there is no more shrinking for the metal of the shaker to do.

And that results in it not fitting together quite as well, and that results in the leakage.

Ideally, you have more than cocktail shaker to prevent this problem because you don’t want to have to wait it out for the metal to de-shrink after warming back up.

This problem is most common with a 3-piece shaker, or the Cobbler Shaker.

Don’t Bother With A Dry Shake

If you’re making drinks with egg whites, then you are likely trying to do a dry shake with the egg whites first and then adding the ice later.

Don’t do this, because it will leak every time.

The best method is to just put the egg white and ice in at the same time and go to town.

The contraction from the ice cancels out the pressure increase from the egg whites foaming.

Any tiny aesthetic improvement you might get on foam (and I don’t agree there even is an improvement) from using a dry shake or reverse dry shake is outweighed by the added trouble of shaking twice and risking a foamy leak.

Final Word

As you can see, there are a few good reasons why your cocktail shaker may be leaking and leaving your hands covered in your cocktail ingredients.

So, work through our solutions above to keep your hands dry.

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