I love a clarified cocktail. Their very deceptive nature eludes to an altogether different drink. When serving up one of my Bloody Marry Martini’s to friends at home, or in a bar. Watching their faces, as they take that first sip. No-one ever expects it to taste as good, if not better than the original.

From this brunchtime fav, to a simple and very quaffable Blood & Sand or this riff on a classic Hemingway Daiquiri. Clarifying a cocktail adds not only the illusion of translucency to your drink, but in my opinion it intensifies flavours and rounds off the finished product.

When making a clarified cocktail, you are simply adding Agar – a vegetarian friendly gelling agent, derived from algae to a juice. The Agar acts to bind all the fibrous bits of the fruit pulp, making it harder to filter. The result is a velvety smooth yet rich fruit consommé.

When it comes to juice – fresh is best, but there are some good quality pre-packaged varieties around. As for that ‘best ever’ Bloody Mary. I’d suggest using a pre-mix. But if you cant find one, hit me up and I’ll share a spice blend recipe.



AKA The Cocktail Guy

Making Your Clarified Juice:

You Will Need:

  • 2 Litre of your desired juice
  • 10gr Agar Agar powder
  • 1 Pan
  • A Heat Source, such as a hob or induction heater (you’ll want the best induction hob for this, trust me)
  • Spatula
  • Non-reactive freezer-friendly container
  • Large sieve or colander
  • Tea cloth or muslin
  • Large, sealable bottle to collect the clarified liquid.


  1. Measure 1Ltr of your desired juice and add to your pan.
  2. Place over a medium-high heat and bring to a rolling boil.
  3. Gradually sprinkle the Agar into the hot juice, ensuring all large lumps and thoroughly mixed in. NB. It is essential that you ensure that the Agar is well incorporated into the juice.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and mix in the remaining half of the juice.
  5. Transfer to a freezer-friendly container and freeze for 24hrs.
  6. Once completely frozen, remove from the freezer and turn upside down to remove the frozen block.
  7. Chop the block into approx.. 8 smaller pieces and set aside.
  8. Line a large sieve or colander with a tea cloth or muslin and place the smaller blocks into the lined sieve.
  9. As the block begins to thaw, the agar acts as a binding element, making it impossible for the larger fibrous material to pass through the muslin. This process will take several hours, but the result is a rich and intense almost consommé like liquid, which is fantastic when added to a cocktail.


Cocktail Suggestions

Clarified Bloody Mary

35ml//1.5oz Vodka (or try it with gin or Tequila)

65ml//2oz Clarified Bloody Mary Mix



Add both to your favourite martini mixer or shaker. Fill with cube ice and stir until icy cold. Gently strain into a martini glass and enjoy neat or with an olive.


Rectified Blood & Sand

35ml//1.5oz Scotch Whisky

15ml//0.5oz Sweet Vermouth

10ml//0.25oz Cherry Liqueur (Cherry Herring)

35ml//1.5oz Clarified OJ



Add ingredients to a large cocktail shaker. Fill with cube ice and stir until icy cold. Gently strain into a martini or coupette glass. Garnish with an orange zest


Hemingway Daiquiri

50ml//1.5oz Light Style Rum

1 Bar//Tea Spoon Maraschino Liqueur

10ml//0.25oz Sugar Syrup

45ml//1.5oz Clarified Pine Grapefruit Juice



Add all ingredients to a large cocktail shaker or martini jug. Fill with cube ice and stir until icy cold. Gently strain into a martini or coupette glass and drop in a maraschino cherry for an extra pop.

Richard Woods
At the forefront of the mixology revolution, Rich has been garnering fans and accolades through his creative reinventions of classic cocktails and exciting new drinks, all served with his signature innovative flair. In this, his first book, Rich unlocks the secrets of making creative cocktails at home, from mastering classic techniques, to flavoring alcohol through simple infusions and more complex distillations and making your own home-made bitters from herbs, spices, fruits, and roots. At the center of Rich’s creative process is an understanding and exploration of flavor; from the way it unravels on the palate to new and unique combinations that are designed to surprise and delight. Including 70 drink recipes, and key information on tools and techniques and infusing and distilling to imbue your drinks with maximum flavor, this is the ultimate guide to modern cocktailing for the home bartender.