7 Techniques To Up Your Cocktail Garnish Game

7 Techniques To Up Your Cocktail Garnish Game

It’s time for you to up your cocktail garnish game! How many times have you ordered a drink because of the way it looks, or picked a recipe to make at home because of the beautiful photo? Master these 7 techniques to up your cocktail garnish game!

Lemon, lime, grapefruit slices
Lemon, lime, grapefruit slices

We’re here to help you get that photo ready cocktail garnish! You’ve put in all the effort and care to make a delicious cocktail, why stop there, put the  finishing touches to your drink with your garnish. After all, we first sample our drinks with our eyes! 

A garnish is not just about making a drink look pretty, although it definitely should do that too. At its best, a garnish is an active ingredient, and in many recipes, it’s as important as any other for the success and balance of the drink. 

All that being said, some garnishes are wonderfully silly and are just there to make you smile, and sometimes that’s all you need!

Here are 7 cocktail garnish ideas to get you started:


Martini lemon twist

Twists are one of the most famous of all cocktail garnishes, but also one of the most misunderstood and mishandled. Disasters tend to happen when there’s no understanding of the ROLE that an ingredient plays, and in the case of a twist, WHAT it even is!


Olives in Martini

Olives are usually limited to Martinis and maybe the odd Bloody Mary / Red Snapper (a Bloody Mary made with Gin…give it a try!).

Because it’s the most common habitat for an olive in a cocktail, we’re just going to be talking about olives in Martinis, and the key guidelines are pretty simple. Rinse the olives before you use and don’t buy olives in oil or olives you wouldn’t eat on their own.

Wheels, Wedges & Slices

Lemon, lime, grapefruit slice

Although these may not be complex techniques, without paying the sufficient amount of attention, Wheels, Wedges & Slices can easily, and for no good reason, turn out looking hideous; like they’d been chewed rather than cut into shape.

So, we’re just going to give you a few simple and clear pointers to make sure your drinks always look their best.


Apple fan closeup
Apple fan garnish

Fans are one of a few garnishes that add more aesthetic qualities than flavour or aroma. For that reason, fans will often be combined with other garnishes that contribute other flavours or aromas. 


Mimosa mint sprig garnish

A sprig of herb, such as mint or sage, is added to a cocktail for visual appeal but most importantly for fresh aromatics. We have some great tips for you to get the most of your herbs and how to care for them.


Glass adding rim

You rim to add texture and flavours to a drink. The flavour on the rim will combine with the rest of the ingredients when it’s sipped from the glass. The impact this has on the balance of the drink must therefore be taken into consideration!

Dehydrated citrus

Dehydrated citrus wheels

This garnish is visually aesthetic with a deep citrus aroma that is quite different from the light fresh aroma you get from freshly cut citrus. It is also a great way of reducing waste. Dehydrated citrus lasts very long when stored properly, unlike fresh cut citrus that only has a few good hours of freshness.

We hope these 7 techniques to up your cocktail garnish game help you create beautiful cocktails like the pros, from the comfort of your home! We are social creatures and love seeing your creations. Show us your skills, tag us @Candra_drinks or message us if you have any questions.

Continue reading

Six Essential Base Spirits for Mixing Cocktails

Learn how to make better drinks with these Six Essential Base Spirits for Mixing Cocktails. Use our recipe cards, articles and more.

Read More

Cocktail 101 : The Espresso Martini

The classic Espresso Martini. Learn more about the Espresso Martini in this Cocktail 101. Picking the best vodka, history, techniques and much more

Read More

Valentine’s Day Cocktails

Valentine’s Day cocktails, Galentine’s Day, Palentine’s Day… or maybe just celebrating the start of a new week!  Whether you’re showing …

Read More

How much juice can you squeeze from a lemon?!

Download Our FREE Cocktail Ingredients Guide

Get Nerdy With Our Latest & Greatest Recipes, Stories & Tips