Why Make A Homemade Sour Mix
The true beauty of making a homemade sour mix is having a fresh, versatile, and easy cocktail mixer for parties. However, its also great to have on hand for lazy-night-at-home whiskey sours or an impromptu afternoon margarita with neighbors.
Theres no reason to buy sour mix when in 10 minutes you can make something almost as convenient and infinitely more delicious. You just cant beat real, fresh ingredients. Making your own sour mix isnt an elaborate project, simply juice a few lemons and limes and combine with sugar and water. Like all DIY ingredients, theres room for fun experimentationtry adding a little orange or grapefruit juice, or using raw sugar or agave syrup. If youre just going to use your mix for margaritas, agave syrup with a combo of lime and orange juice could be just right.
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Combine The Liquids In A Cocktail Shaker
Take out your trusty cocktail shaker and begin adding your liquids. This includes the whiskey, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white. Once you add them in, close the lid of the cocktail shaker tight and dry-shake the ingredients for about 30 seconds. The consistency should be frothy. McGlinn says that dry shaking is the way to go. “It is the best way to mix egg whites into your cocktail. Like in baking, you can transform egg whites by whipping them and in making cocktails, this can be done quickly in a cocktail shaker,” she notes.
Don’t have a cocktail shaker? “We’ve used mason jars and beer glasses to mix cocktails in a pinch! Mason jars work especially well, since they are sealable and durable for shaking,” McGlinn shares. “You can also use two sturdy cups, about the same size, and use them like a Boston shaker.”
How To Make Sweet And Sour Mix
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Sour Mix: What’s On The Shelf
There are dozens of commercial sour mix available at grocery and liquor stores, sometimes called sweet and sour, margarita, Collins mix, or lemon-lime mix. Sometimes it comes in a big plastic jug, small artisan-looking bottle, or bag of powder, but however it comes, store-bought sour mix compromises on flavor and freshness.
Cheap sour mixes are made from artificial lemon and lime flavoring along with corn syrup, coloring, preservatives, and stabilizers. Higher-end mixes are made with juice from concentrate, citric acid, and sugar. Despite its appearance, commercial sour mix is not made with radioactive citrus and will not give you super powers.
You Can Put Red Wine In It
A barspoon of red wine not only adds a glorious glow to your Whiskey Sour, it also provides it with a slightly altered moniker, aka the New York Sour, and more important adds to the drinks balance. A dry red wine cuts through all that acidity and balances it out, says McCoy. His recommendation: a red with medium tannic structure, like sangiovese or merlot. He also likes to play around with other wine-based aromatized and fortified wines, like vermouth, sherry or amaro.
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How Long Does Whisky Sour Mix Last
As long as it is unopened, an unopened bottle of whisky sour mix will last about 12-18 months at room temperature. The mix remains safe to use after the estimated shelf-life but it will not be as fresh.
If you want your whisky sour mix to last long, store it in a cool, and dark place away from the direct or indirect sources of sunlight. Heat and temperature fluctuations result in quick degradation of the mix.
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The Best Whiskey Sour Ingredients
Bourbon: Choosing a bourbon for this cocktail shouldnt be difficult. I recommend a good value bottle, something in the price range of $15 to $25. Next time youre at a cocktail bar you like, ask the bartender which specific bottles of any given spirit they have in their well bar. This is a great way to find out whats good, both for your home bar and your budget.
Lemon juice: Next up, fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Ill say it again because this is so important: fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Gone are the days of using cheap mixes. If you want the absolute best whiskey sour you ever did taste in your life, then you need the real-deal fresh juice. Simple as that!
Simple syrup: For the sweetener, use a simple syrup . There are several whiskey sour recipes out there that call for a heaping bar spoon of sugar. Youre free to go this route, but simple syrup combines so much better, so I prefer and recommend this.
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What Makes A Whiskey Soursour
While were talking about lemon, lets call it what it is. Sour! That pucker-your-mouth tartness is exactly what wakes this cocktail right up and gives it its name the whiskey sour.
Of course, in some mainstream establishments, the whiskey sour is made from whiskey and sour mix. Sour mix isnt typically an ingredient I choose because its loaded with sugar and artificial crap and it tasteswell, artificial!
Fresh lemon juice is so much brighter and it gives this drink the perfect pucker youre wanting from something with a title like whiskey sour. Plus, no need to go to the store and buy sour mix that will sit collecting dust in your liquor cabinet. Just grab an ole lemon out of the fridge and youre about good to go!
To balance out the sour, you need some sweet
I actually love using maple syrup and agave in cocktails. I think they incorporate just as well as simple syrup and add a touch of flavor. Plus, avoiding refined sugar usually cuts down my chances of a possible headache the next day.
I chose maple for this drink to up the cozy, warm factor. Of course, you can absolutely sub simple syrup directly for maple, but why bother, really when Im sure you more typically have maple syrup laying around the house.
But, you cant stop at just whiskey, lemon and maple for the absolutely BEST whiskey sour. That would make things a little too baseline. Lets talk about adding an egg white.
Fresh Homemade Sour Mix
Having a good sour mix on hand is an easy way to make dozens of interesting cocktails, from amaretto sours to margaritas with little umbrellas.
This sour mix recipe is simple to make, keeps for several weeks, and is a fantastic foundation for margaritas, sours, daiquiris, and other cocktails that use fresh citrus juice and sugar. Its also infinitely customizable to your tastes and the drinks being served.
Making a great homemade sour mix is simple all you need is a few lemons, some sugar, a little water, and the ability to stir.
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More Homemade Drink Essentials
Simple syrup is key to sweetening tons of cocktails, and you can use my recipe to mix up tons of combinations, like cinnamon syrup, lavender syrup and mint syrup.
For cocktails like the tequila sunrise,homemade grenadine syrup is a tasty syrup to keep on hand.
Theres nothing like a homemade cocktail cherry to garnish your old-fashioned, whiskey sour or Manhattan.
My homemade Bloody Mary mix makes a big batch of everyones favorite savory cocktail to serve alongside delicious brunches.
You can also make homemade liqueurs, like jalapeño tequila for spicy margaritas or spiced rum for tiki drinks.
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Whats The Best Whiskey For A Whiskey Sour
Since whiskey is the star in this classic cocktail, youll want to use a high-quality one. That doesnt necessarily mean the most expensive bottle you can find but definitely purchase a mid-price range whiskey. Bourbon is a type of whiskey and thats what is normally used and what we prefer it for its sweeter flavor.
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Does Sweet And Sour Mix Go Bad
Yes, the sweet and sour mix goes bad. No food lasts forever even if it contains tons of preservatives. We understand that the ingredients in the sweet and sour mix have natural preservative properties but they are only active for a time.
Your sweet and sour mix can go over our overtime, grow mold, or become clumpy. Properly stored, your sweet and sour mix will last up to 2-3 weeks in the fridge. One relief is that you can always make yourself a new batch of the sweet and sour mix even if it goes bad since it is so easy to make.
Cocktails To Make With Sour Mix
As the foundation for so many classic cocktails, every good home bartender should have a go-to sour mix that they can whip up at a moments notice.
In cocktail recipes, the sour mix is often referred to as lemon sour or sweet n sour mix. Its a versatile ingredient that can be paired with vodka, whiskey, tequila, rum, gin, and more.
A few of our favorite cocktails that highlight the flavors of this fresh sour mix are this clean drinking Vodka Sour that gets its frothy top when its shaken with an egg white or the way the mix brings out whiskeys complex flavors in this Whiskey Sour recipe.
When making sours or other drinks that use egg whites, buy a carton of liquid egg whites. They are just as smooth and create as much froth as freshly cracked eggs, with the advantage of being much less messy and fully pasteurized.
Another one of our favorites is this Mezcal Margarita that uses a smoky mezcal and a pinch of salt to create a truly unique, smooth sipping margarita that will make you feel like youre lounging on a tropical beach.
This mix will keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Its also easy to make in large batches when youre throwing a party and want to make lots of cocktails.
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Recipe Notes And Helpful Tips
- Always use good quality whiskey or bourbon. My new favorite is Four Roses Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey. It is a smooth easy sipping whiskey with a delightful true bourbon smell.
- For best results chill the simple syrup before using.
- Store simple syrup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 month.
- Use fresh squeezed lemon juice for a clean citrus flavor.
- For added flavor mix 1 tablespoon of maple syrup into the simple syrup or better yet make a maple simple syrup.
- Whiskey sours are typically served in an old fashioned glass, rocks glass or lowball glass.
- The original whiskey sour had an egg white mixed in for froth. I really prefer them without it but the Boston sour is something that everyone should experience. Add the whiskey, lemon juice, simple syrup, and an egg white to a cocktail shaker without ice and shake to combine . Then add the ice and shake again before straining into a glass filled with ice.
- For a New York Sour add 1/2 ounce full bodied red wine gently to the top of the fully prepared whiskey sour.
- Substitute honey for the sugar in the simple syrup and you have yourself a Gold Rush,
What Is Sweet And Sour Mix
- 1 part water
- 1 part fresh lemon juice
- 1 part fresh lime juice
Its that easy. If you have simple syrup on had already, youll combine 2 parts simple syrup with 1 lemon juice and 1 part lime juice. I usually go with 1 cup each and get a quart of fresh sweet and sour mix.
Recipe Hack: If you dont want to spend the money on fresh-squeezed fruit juice , its totally okay to use the store-bought lemon and lime juice bottles. No judgment here friends.
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Or Mix Up Single Drinks
You can also use the standard cocktail shaker method with this whiskey sour mix recipe. Place the sour mix and whiskey into the cocktail shaker, add ice, and shake! This is nice if youre planning to store the mix and just get it out for single drinks on different occasions. Bonus: you can also add an egg white to the whiskey sour using that method to get the classic retro foam topping.
Recipe: Homemade Sour Mix
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup of water
1 cup fresh citrus juice: I used 4 limes, 1 Meyer lemon, and 3 Seville oranges
In a medium saucepan over low heat, add all of the ingredients.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
Cook for 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and let cool.
Strain to remove any pulp.
Pour into a sterile bottle.
Keep in the fridge until ready to use.
Makes almost 2 cups.
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What Is A Whiskey Sour
A traditional whiskey sour is made with whiskey, lemon juice, sugar, and an egg white. The egg white adds a creamy, rich flavor and a frothy texture to the surface, which is fun to drink.
Even though this age-old tradition dates back to the mid 1800s, most bars dont typically make it that way anymore and youll usually be served a whiskey sour without an egg white.
Weve included a version with and without the egg below and you can decide which you like best!
Using Sour Mix In Drinks
Once you have a sour mix, there are many fun ways to incorporate it into your drinks, both spiked and nonalcoholic. Naturally, you can use it in any cocktail recipe that calls for sour mix. These include old favorites like the Long Island iced tea and , as well as many margarita recipes, including the gummy bear margarita.
Use sour mix to adjust any drinks flavor when you want to give it a spark of both sweet and sour flavors. For example, a splash of sour makes a livelier gin and tonic and sweetens it just ever so slightly. Lime sour is particularly good with gin, while a lemon-lime sour is great with vodka soda drinks.
Sour mix is also a shortcut for cocktails that call for simple syrup and either lemon or lime juices separately. Its useful for many of the classic cocktails that were developed before sour mix was widely used in the bar. For instance, you can replace the syrup and lemon juice of the Tom Collins with a single shot of sour mix. The New Orleans Fizz is another great example because the recipe uses both lemon and lime juices along with syrup. If you do this substitution, you may have to use more or less sour mix than the recipe calls for to obtain a balanced cocktail.
With a bottle of sour mix in the fridge, you can pour club soda over 1 or 2 ounces sour to create the freshest lemon-lime soda that rivals 7-Up or Sprite. Similarly, sour mix is essentially a concentrate for homemade lemonade. Add water to taste , and you have an instant glass of lemonade.
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The 8 Best Whiskeys For Making A Whiskey Sour Cocktail
byDecember 7, 2021, 8:47 am12.2k Views
Whiskey sour is an elegant and sweet-tasting cocktail classic. Although they can vary, most whiskey sours contain a frothy egg white to give the drink a creamier texture, freshly squeezed citrus juice, and a little dash of syrup.
Whiskey sours and classical beverages like it can be tailored to suit any taste. There are quite a few ways to make a whiskey sour and finding out which method suits you best can be quite the experience.
Maybe you want egg white or maybe you dont. Maybe you want it on the rocks with a cherry or with no cherry up against the rocks.
Of course, most importantly is the type of whiskey you use.
The whiskey you choose can significantly change the flavor profile of this classic cocktail.
Selecting the right whiskey with the correct balance can transform your cocktail from something vapid into something extraordinary.
To help you tailor your whiskey sour according to your taste, we have rounded up the best whiskeys for whiskey sours in 2021.
With advice from expert bartenders, you will be able to find a whiskey that can change your cocktail game for good.
Homemade Sour Mix Is Your Ticket To Happy Hour Bliss
The only thing better than a good recipe? When something’s so easy to make that you don’t even need one. Welcome toIt’s That Simple, a column where we talk you through the process of making the dishes and drinks we can make with our eyes closed.
Who wants a cocktail? is an offer that I always want to make to guests as a lazy summer afternoon begins to bend toward sunset. But the thing is, Im not trying to spend those precious golden hours squeezing citrus, or making simple syrup, or measuring out dribs and drabs from a bunch of bottles while my friends lounge around expectantly. I want those cocktails to just happen. Which is where homemade sour mix comes in.
What is sour mix, you ask? Well, its easiest to understand in the context of The Sour, a category of bright and bracing shaken cocktails that you already know and lovethink whiskey sours and classic daiquiris, margaritas and gin gimletsthat are all essentially comprised of booze, tart citrus juice, and sugar. Sour mix is simply the sour and sweet elements of that tantalizing trifecta combined in the proper ratio, thus saving you from having to measure them out separately when its time to make a drink. You can find a shelf-stable version for sale at most supermarkets, but its often fluorescent, corn-syrup laden, and lacking the characteristic bite of freshly squeezed citrus. But the good news is that making sour mix yourself could not be easier, or more delicious.
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