In the last episode I talked about how to get started with bartending with common kitchen equipment. Today I’m going to talk about the basics of standard bar equipment. While kitchen items work great, a few special bar items can make things a little nicer to work with, and well, you can also look a little more badass.

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Home Bar Tips recorded

Cocktail Companion: White Russian

The White Russian is a beloved, easy drink. It was one of the first cocktails I ever made, in my teen “fancy” drinking phase. Reaching back through time to the 30s, there used to be a drink called just a Russian, which was vodka, gin, and crème de cacao. This is when the world outside of Russia was beginning to start experimenting with vodka. Moving forward, the drink went through a variety of transformations over the years and eventually, today, you end up with a Black Russian, which is just vodka and Kahlua, and the White Russian, which is vodka, Kahlua, and cream. It really took off as a drink in the 70s, and then waned a bit. The drink had a huge revival in late 90s when it appeared in the movie, The Big Lebowski, as the “Caucasian”. There are even Big Lebowski parties out there still today, where everyone watches the movie and downs a White Russian every time the Dude does in the movie.


Served on the rocks, 3 oz.

  • 1 1/2 oz. vodka
  • 3/4 oz. coffee liqueur (like Kahlua)
  • 3/4 oz. cream

There are several ways of mixing this up, depending on who you talk to. I like to layer the drink because it looks cooler, but to each their own.

Method 1: Add the vodka and kahlua to an old fashioned glass with ice. Float the cream on top, and then stir the drink before you take a swig.

Method 2: Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into an old fashioned glass, with or without ice.

Episode Music
Mining by Moonlight Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0