Why your garnish matters - cup with lime in it

Why a Cocktail Garnish Matters!

We know a cocktail garnish is a small detail, but it's the little things that count! Garnish can make or break your cocktail. I know that sentence seems dramatic, but it is true! With so many choices of a cocktail garnish to choose from, how do you pick what type is best for you?

We're going to give our opinion on which cocktail garnish we think is the best in different circumstances.

cocktail with garnish

You may be thinking, when am I ever gonna use garnishes? Well, a cocktail party is a perfect time to impress guests with your creativity and flair for garnishes. Find out what flavors go best with which alcohol, cocktail, or mixers at home! Your guests will think you spent a long time on these well-thought-out cocktails. They will be the talk of the night and for nights to come.

It's important to remember that a cocktail garnish is not just an aesthetic choice - it can affect the flavor of your drink as well! Even though adding a lime wedge to everything looks cute, it will potentially ruin your cocktail. In cocktail bars, the cocktail garnish is often selected for specific flavors that complement or contrast with other ingredients. For example, a cocktail may be served with an orange peel to balance out bitterness from dark spirits added in the preparation process. The garnish can also help tie together different flavor profiles and textures throughout the drink. This is why not every cocktail comes with a garnish, as they need to create a cohesive flavor story.

A cocktail garnish can also affect the drink’s texture. For a cocktail that is served with ice, adding an herb, for example, will help release flavor when you chew on it. One way to get this effect without using herbs is to add fruit slices or chunks (such as citrus) instead of using diced fruit which can easily fall apart inside the drink which can cause an unpleasant texture. Most cocktails are meant to be smooth when drunk, so make sure your choice of garnish does not hinder the experience of the cocktail.

Garnishes can also be used to signify the cocktail's identity. A cocktail garnish is a symbol and reminder of your experience at that establishment; it serves as an invitation for others who want to enjoy similar cocktails in the future. For example, cherries on top of a Manhattan cocktail may denote its infusion with dry vermouth or maraschino liqueur. Brands such as Cin-Sational Cherry Company also make cocktail garnishes that provide guests with a high-quality cocktail experience you can feel confident in serving to your family and friends.

Keep in mind that some garnishes are not meant to be eaten but rather a component of the cocktail itself. So be weary in which garnishes you choose to eat. The same could be said on the opposite side, and you can eat some garnishes such as the tropical fruits used in most rum-based cocktails but munching on a piece of mint does not sound as appetizing as a slice of pineapple.

Now that we got the basics of a cocktail garnish out of the way let's look into some cocktail ideas and recipes to make at home or your next party. Do not forget to add the garnishes to these cocktails because you deserve to drink classy. Here are a few of our favorite cocktails and their respective garnishes.

An Old-Fashioned cocktail:

old fashion

The garnish is orange slices and cherries. This cocktail is made with whiskey, bitters, water, or sugar for sweetness to taste and a splash of soda or club soda (optional). The orange slices are placed on the inside edge of the glass as it's being mixed to provide an aromatic citrus flavor that matches the cocktail's sweet taste. Finally, a cherry is placed on top of the drink to provide garnish and add color to this cocktail.

A Mojito cocktail:

Mint leaves and lime wedges for garnish. Mojitos are made with white rum or silver tequila, sugar (or honey), freshly squeezed lime juice,

The Margarita cocktail:

Which is tequila-based, is best served with salt on the rim of your glass. If you prefer something with some more spice, try a jalapeno margarita with the garnish of sliced jalapeno peppers.

Traditional Martini with its gin and vermouth base:

Try adding stuffed olive's and green olives to garnish the outside and inside of the glass.

A Bloody Mary cocktail as a vodka base:

Will be complete with cocktail onions or celery placed around the rim of your glass.

A Moscow Mule cocktail:

With a mixed base of vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice goes best with a lime wedge garnish to accentuate the lime juice flavor.

Most Rum-based cocktails:

Like a Pina Colada, Mai Tai, and daiquiri mixers tend to be garnished with tropical fruit.


pina colada

A Hurricane:

Which is a dark rum-based cocktail infused with a mixture of fruit juices and grenadine. It is garnished with an orange slice and cherry.

There is an abundance of different types of cocktails, but we just listed a few. They complete the cocktail experience and can even be used to tell someone what type of cocktail you're drinking if they walk past your table with their eyes closed or want something that is non-alcoholic but has the same flavors as an alcoholic cocktail. So next time you find yourself with leftover limes or orange slices, think about what cocktail you can whip up to use it with. Then, please sit back, enjoy, and make sure to save one for us!