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Shaken vs Stirred - Or why James Bond was wrong

Shaken vs Stirred

Or why James Bond was wrong


With the latest James Bond adventure, No Time To Die,  finally being released in cinemas, we thought it was time to address one of 007's most memorable lines.

"Vodka Martini. Shaken not Stirred."

There are two things going on here. Firstly, James' preference for vodka. Traditional martinis are made with gin rather than vodka, but that's just personal taste. 

A vodka martini is smooth and slightly sharp compared to a gin martini's complex botanicals.

No, it's 007 insisting the martini is shaken rather than stirred that we want to pick apart.

Does it really make that much difference? 




You see, for cocktails that contain cloudy ingredients, such as fruit juice, egg, or cream, you need to shake it vigorously with ice to mix everything thoroughly. This emulsifies the ingredients, adding air bubbles into the mix while diluting the cocktail thanks to the melting ice.

Your cocktail will have a lively and slightly effervescent texture.

On the other hand, Spirit-based cocktails are stirred slowly with ice to chill your drink as you mix the spirits together. As it's a much gentler preparation method, the ice doesn't melt as quickly, and the resulting drink is less diluted.

Your martini will be silky smooth and chilled to perfection.

To steal a line from President Bartlet in the West Wing:

James is ordering a weak martini and being snooty about it.


Put it to the test with a Rusty Barrel Cocktail Making set, which contains all the home bar accessories you need to make the perfect martini, shaken or stirred. 

Rusty Barrel Mayfair Cocktail Shaker Set



Pop your twisted bar spoon in the bottom tin and fill your shaker ¾ full with ice.


  • 80ml of your preferred gin
  • 10ml of dry vermouth

Gently stir the mixture for around 15 seconds and make sure you have a taste to check it’s chilled and diluted enough for your liking.

Pop the Hawthorn strainer spring side down onto the top of the shaker to hold back the ice, and slowly pour your drink into a martini glass.

Add a twist of lemon peel, and you're ready to go.



If you want to try it Bond-style, switch out the gin for vodka and fill the bottom tin ⅔ full with ice.

Pop the small tin on top (very important!) and shake for 8 to 10 seconds, away from your body, above your head, over your shoulder—you decide!

Give the shaker a tap, and take off the lid.

If you have a Boston cocktail shaker, pop the Hawthorn strainer on top and pour. The Manhattan-style shaker has a strainer built into the lid.

Enjoy your martini— responsibly!



Rusty Barrel Manhattan Collection

Rusty Barrel Boston Collection

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