When Shakespeare wrote, “Though she is small, she is fierce,” he may have been describing the mythical shooter. This miniature mixed drink served in a shot glass has gone out of fashion over the years, but for conscious drinkers it’s remained a less resilient way to be part of the celebration without risking the dreaded consequences of a full-size. cut.
While shooters may suffer from a bad rap thanks to neon-hued Jell-O and Kamikaze concoctions full of sugary, cheap ingredients, top bartenders have creatively reclaimed the category. From handshake photos often shared by industry pros to unique recipes from our favorite bars, here are five bartender-approved options that are pretty easy to whip up at home.
Located in New York’s Greenwich Village, Katana Kitten offers a wide range of Japanese-inspired cocktails served in a comfortable, dimly lit setting. On his extensive cocktail list, the bar owner and author of “The Japanese art of cocktails“Masahiro Urushido brings together several boilermakers, including Ichi-Mas. The simple drink combines the rich floral notes of Japanese whiskey with spicy salt and a refreshing slice of watermelon to follow.
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- 1 glass of cold Suntory Toki whiskey
- Shichimi salt (recipe follows)
- Slice of watermelon
- 1 can of Sapporo beer, chilled
- Serve the shot of cold Suntory Toki topped with a slice of watermelon sprinkled with shichimi salt and accompanied by a can of cold Sapporo beer.
Shichimi salt (for 1 cup)
- ½ cup shichimi togarashi
- ½ cup Maldon salt
- The zest of 1 lemon, cut into strips using a peeler or paring knife
- Mix all the ingredients using a mortar and pestle.
- Transfer to an airtight, non-reactive 1-cup glass container and store in the pantry for up to 1 year.
The PB&J shot
A simple two-ingredient combo, this shot brings back nostalgic memories of childhood lunches. But make no mistake: this recipe packs a punch. A combination of peanut butter flavored whiskey and raspberry liqueur, the end result is smooth yet balanced in flavor.
- ¾ ounce peanut butter whiskey (such as skrew ball)
- ¾ ounce raspberry liqueur (such as Chambord)
- Garnish (optional): raspberries
- Combine whiskey and Chambord in a shot glass
- Garnish with three raspberry skewers.
The classic Snaquiri
Known as a bartender’s classic handshake shot, the Snaquiri is a mini Daiquiri meant to be pulled in a single sip. A low ABV substitute for a classic tequila shot, a Snaquiri is a lighter way to keep the party going. This recipe, from the tiki expert Shannon Mustiphercontains everything you love about Daiquiri, just in a smaller package.
- 2 ounces aged white rum
- ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
- ½ – ¾ ounce simple syrup, adjusted to taste
Combine everything in a shaker with ice, shake and strain into the desired container.
Garnish with grated fresh lime zest, then serve.
Simplify your shooting game with this one-ingredient staple from Newport, RI The local bartender’s handshake drink is simply a shortie of Grand Marnier orange liqueur in a shot glass. It might not be the most complex shooter on this list, but the “Grandma” is an industry darling that’s here to stay.
- Pour into a shot glass and enjoy.
Lower east side bar Double chicken please is known for its experimental cocktail menu and unique twists on classics. The DCP hit is sweet and smoky, with flavors of shiso, calamansi lime and sour plum.
- ½ ounce Ilegal Mezcal Joven infused with shiso
- ¼ ounce calamansi lime juice
- 1 ounce Taiwanese sour plum juice
- Mix all the ingredients and strain to remove any pulp.
- Pour into a shot glass.