3 Bartender-Approved Ways to Garnish Cocktails

These quick finishes make cocktails even better.
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Dress up your drinks for the holidays with these festive finishing touches from Ivy Mix, co-owner and head bartender of Leyenda in Brooklyn and the author of Spirits of Latin America.

old fashioned cocktail illustration

A New Twist

Grab some mini cutters (sometimes labeled vegetable cutters) and get crafty with that citrus zest! Using a paring knife, slice off a wide swath of peel, then stamp out some shapes. Slip the zest into your drink; use the cute cutouts as a cheese-platter garnish. 

cocktail served in coupe illustration

Make Your Mark

With a small knife (a utility knife works well), cut out a simple shape in the center of a plastic deli lid to make a stencil. Place the lid over your drink, then dust with confectioners’ sugar mixed with cinnamon, cocoa powder, or nutmeg, if you’re serving eggnog. 

martini cocktail illustration

Berry Good!

Olives and pickled onions are a classic martini garnish, but caper berries, the pickled fruit of the caper plant that’s about the size of a large olive, are a swanky holiday upgrade. Look for them near the pickles and olives, or order them online. 

This article originally appeared in our Holiday 2020 issue. Get the magazine here.