cobbler shaker bartender tools

Behind the Bar Rail: Cobbler Shaker

A cobbler shaker is an essential tool in the fine art of mixology. Shaking a drink not only mixes all the ingredients but also cools them down. The crisp taste and feel of a chilled drink can  be done with a cocktail shaker. An enhanced cocktail experience cannot be had without one.

The 3 Piece Cobbler Shaker

The Cobbler shaker is excellent for beginners and can also be known as the 3 Piece. The main container looks like a Boston tin but it's main distinction is the lid. The Cobbler has a lid with a built-in strainer and a cap to cover the strainer holes while shaking the drink.

Due to the strainer being integrated into the lid a cocktail strainer is not needed when pouring into a glass. 

Cobblers tend to have a smaller volume than Boston shakers meaning they specialize in only shaking one drink. 

Because of their ability to produce only one drink at a time and with a smaller volume, the Cobbler is argued to not be as effective when serving in a busy bar.

The integrated strainer and smaller volume makes the Cobbler more suited for beginners.

The Pros and Cons


  • Decorative – lids and caps can come in a variety of shapes
  • Integrated Strainer – no need for a cocktail strainer
  • Less Dilution – smaller volume means less ice
  • Easy to Use – the best shaker for beginners, no special techniques are needed to use this shaker



  • Small Volume – less efficient in busy bars
  • Difficult to Open – changes in temperature cause the metal to contract creating a tight seal on the lid and cap – this often requires the shaker to be rinsed under a warm tap to open it which defeats the point of chilling the drink in a shaker
  • Not Suitable for Egg – due to the dirt traps around the cap, egg whites and syrups can easily get stuck


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