If you don't want to be stuck in the kitchen mixing cocktails at your next party you can batch a variety of tasty cocktails and mixed drinks to keep a big crowd happy and spend more time mingling instead of mixing.
Nora Maynard, over at the culinary blog The Kitchn, was teaching a cocktail workshop. She needed to serve a lot of cocktails and there just wasn't a good way to hand mix each. What to do? Try batching them and hope for the best! She describes the experience:
I was leading a cocktail workshop in which I needed to serve 36 people sample servings of two different cocktails: first a round of Gibsons (Martinis garnished with a cocktail onion) and later a round of Manhattans. I'd made both of these drinks at home countless times before, but never for more than a handful of people at one time. Both cocktails require a certain degree of careful measuring, and both are served straight up - that is, stirred with ice (for chilling and slight dilution), then strained into a cocktail glass. The crucial point here: both are best served freshly made, while still ice-cold.
I figured the best strategy would be to combine all the ingredients in large carafes before everyone arrived, saving myself a lot of measuring time once the event was underway. That way, all I'd need to do was the stirring and straining in batches of 3 or 4 as the guests arrived.
Quite honestly, I was a little apprehensive. Could a cocktail poured from a big batch of 36 taste as good as an individually crafted one? Yes! I was quite pleasantly surprised by just how well these mass-produced cocktails turned out.
As much as I enjoy mixing cocktails there is definitely something to be said for mingling more with your mixed drink and spending less time mixing them up. Check out the article at the link below for a step-by-step guide to batching cocktails and pitfalls to avoid — you'll still be mixing cocktails that involve carbonation or fussy components by hand. Have your own bartending tips or tricks to share? Let's hear about it in the comments.
How to Batch Cocktails to Serve a Crowd [The Kitchn]