You’ve just made the perfect cocktail. And you used a cocktail shaker to look extra fancy. But when you’re ready to serve it, the lid won’t come off. It’s stuck. Won’t budge. You’re pulling and you’re twisting and you’re running warm water over the lid and when you finally manage to disentangle the pieces your cocktail is a watered-down mess.
Sound familiar? It can’t just be us, right?
Cocktail shakers are easy to use, but they won’t impress your guests if you can’t open them! The ease of use depends on the style, and there are three traditional styles: Cobbler, Parisian, and Boston.
We’ll explain all the styles below, and give examples of easy-to-open shakers, but if you’re in a hurry, this is our overall recommendation:
This cocktail shaker is sleek, easy to use, and comes with recipes and measurements printed on the glass. Making a cocktail has never been simpler!
The Difference Between Cocktail Shakers
Each style has its pros and cons – one of the major cons, of course, is that some get stuck way more than others. Below we’ve outlined the three styles to give you an idea of what to look for if you you’ve had trouble in the past with cocktail shakers that just won’t open.
Cobbler-Style Cocktail Shaker: hardest to open
This shaker consists of three parts: the body, the strainer, and the cap. It is often recommended for creating single-serving cocktails, but it is notorious for getting stuck. When chilled by the ice, the metal pieces contract, sometimes becoming impossible to separate. The Cobbler shaker is a stylish option, but not always practical.
The upside is that it comes with its own built-in strainer. Another downside, though, is that the holes in the strainer are often large enough to let unwanted pulp through.
Parisian-style cocktail shaker: Occasionally hard to open
The Parisian-style cocktail shaker (also called French-style) consists of two parts: the body and the lid. The two are designed to fit tightly together to eliminate leakage while shaking. This, however, can make the shaker difficult to open. Like the Cobbler-style shaker, the contracting metal can create a tight seal that is hard to break.
Boston-style cocktail shaker: easiest to open
The Boston-style shaker is the simplest option and consists of a glass and a tin body, although sometimes they will both be tin. The two pieces create a tight seal to prevent leaking, but they are not likely to get stuck. This shaker comes with its own challenges, though, as you have to know how to create that seal so your drink doesn’t go everywhere while shaking. With some practice though, this shaker generally becomes the favorite of people who enjoy making cocktails.
While these are the three traditional styles, several hybrids exist to combine the benefits of each. Below we’ve listed the top cocktail shakers that are designed to be easy to use without getting stuck.
Best Cocktail Shakers that won’t get stuck
The Basic Boston Cocktail Shaker
This is the traditional, no-frills Boston-style cocktail shaker. Two similar sized containers fit together to create an easy experience that won’t leave you begging and pleading with your shaker to open. The benefit of two tin pieces, as opposed to tin and glass, is that you don’t have to worry about the glass breaking. This set comes with a classic Hawthorne strainer and a jigger to measure out your alcohol. Used by both beginners and advanced bartenders, everyone agrees that this is one of the easiest to use and highest-quality shakers.
Cobbler-Style Shaker with an Easy-to-Remove Lid
This shaker looks like a Cobbler-style shaker, but with very different materials. The stainless steel cap has a rubber ring that fits snugly into the glass body, creating a tight seal for shaking. People love this product because the tight seal means no leakage, but the rubber fitting also allows for very easy opening. A huge benefit is the built-in strainer – no need to buy an extra piece. And plus, this glass is covered in fun drink recipes to try out!
If you like this shaker, check out this list of other easy-to-open glass shakers.
Boston-Style Shaker with a Tight Seal
This is a Boston-style shaker with a twist: a silicon rim on the glass cup. This creates an excellent seal, but again, allows the two pieces to be very easily separated. Very sturdy and easy to clean, this is a favorite among people who want that Boston shaker look but with modern improvements to make leak-proof shaking a reality. The glass also comes marked with measurements and handy recipes for basic cocktails.
Stylish Boston-Style Shaker Set
If you’re looking for an shaker that is both practical and stylish, this might be the perfect one for you. This cocktail set comes with everything you need to make the perfect drink, and you can get it in rose gold, silver, black, or brass. This Boston-style shaker is leak-proof but with a seal that is easy to break when you’re ready to pour. The set should last you quite a while as it comes with a lifetime guarantee.
We hope that your next party can include an easy-to-use cocktail shaker that won’t get stuck when you’re trying to serve drinks! If you’re looking to class up your next gathering even more, check out these shot glass serving trays that’ll fit any style.