Handcrafted Cocktails: A Bad Ass Bartending Class

handcrafted cocktails class
My daughter Alex and husband Craig gearing up for the class

Handcrafted cocktails – Yes please!

the Pantry handcrafted cocktails class
The adorable kitchen and classroom of The Pantry


The Pantry is a community kitchen in the charming Seattle neighborhood of Ballard and the cooking classes are popular as well as a red hot commodity. They offer a variety of classes that focus on traditional food crafts and technique, culinary camps for the kids, and other creative ideas that bring people together to eat great food and to learn.

The Pantry Classes fill up very quickly and a spot is not that easy to get, so when our foodie daughter (SeaTownBites.com) asked if we wanted to reserve a spot for the Bad Ass Bartending class three months in the future, we said yes without hesitation.

learning about handcrafted cocktails
Anna Wallace is holding a fresh jug of Vin Maison


For anything that pertains to handcrafted cocktails, you can count us in; needless to say we had an absolute blast. The class was taught by Anna Wallace, who was the quintessential Bad Ass Bartender herself. She spent a lot of time sharing her knowledge of vintage cocktails, offered helpful insider’s tips and her passion for the industry.

We played bartender for a few hours, learned some new techniques, executed some creative cocktail recipes and ultimately gained some bartending panache! Oh, and we drank some de-licious cocktails!


Winter Handcrafted Cocktails *

*I have included the general recipe for each cocktail to satisfy your curiosity, however, if you would like more details, just email me. I don’t want to give away all of Anna’s secrets!

blood oranges ready for handcrafted cocktails
Blood oranges for the drinks, with a fresh peel for the garnish


Sparkling Vin Maison – Anna shared with us that “Vin Maison is a type of aperitif that is homemade in France, literally translated to “house wine” and it is typically made using wine, spirit, sugar and spices”. Anna always uses ingredients that are in season and chose to include winter-ripe, juicy blood oranges in this recipe.

  • 1/2 ounce gin
  • 1 ounce blood orange juice
  • 1 1/12 ounces Orange Vin Maison
  • Dash of Orange Bitters
  • Pinch of salt
  • Soda water

Assembling the ingredients in the shaker

ingredients in the shaker for handcrafted cocktails


Alex using her perfect shaking technique

shaking up handcrafted cocktails

straining handcrafted cocktails
Straining the cocktail


The gorgeous finished cocktail – Sparkling Vin Maison

two Sparkling Vin Maison - handcrafted cocktails


Brandy Milk Punch

handcrafted cocktails Brandy Milk Punch
Brandy Milk Punch with freshly grated nutmeg – It smelled and tasted like heaven!


Brandy Milk Punch is an old New Orleans cocktail traditionally served around the holidays after a rich meal or alongside brunch. It looks like it might be too rich and filling, it wasn’t at all. It tasted kind of like egg nog but much lighter.

  • 2 ounces of brandy or bourbon
  • 2 ounces of cold meringue milk
  • 1/4 heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Ice cubes
  • Fresh nutmeg to garnish

Trader Vic’s Punch

Trader Vic's Punch


Trader Vic was the master behind most of the Tiki drinks that are in our regular repertoire of vacation cocktails. Anna again used winter citrus fruit juices.

  • 1 ounce blood orange juice
  • 1 ounce lemon juice
  • 1 1/4 ounces bourbon (like Bulleit)
  • 1/2 ounce simple syrup
  • 1/4 ounce homemade orgeat
  • Dash of St Elizabeth Allspice Dram
  • Optional garnishes: mint freshly grated nutmeg, amarena cherries
  • 1 blood orange, sliced into wheels for garnish

Oaxacan Hot Chocolate

Adult Oaxacan Hot Chocolate with tequila - handcrafted cocktails


We used a Molinillo which is a traditional Mexican turned wood whisk which we used to whip up the ingredients.These tools are also used in Colombia. This interesting “whisk” was invented by the Spaniard colonists in Mexico in the 1700’s.

A molinillo – Put the bigger end in a large pan of hot chocolate. Hold it between the palms and rotate by rubbing the palms together; this rotation creates the froth in the drink.


Mexican Hot Chocolate ingredients
Hot Chocolate ingredients
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 3 ounces Ibarra Oaxacan Chocolate; broken into chunks
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa powder, such as Scharffen Berger
  • 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar
  • 1/8 – 1/4 cayenne pepper
  • 4 ounces Cazadores Anejo tequila
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon fine sugar
  • Pinch of espresso salt
  • Ground cinnamon, for garnish
  • Oaxacan chocolate, for garnish

This divine adult version of hot chocolate was so delicious, with a kick of cayenne and tequila. I have never had tequila in my hot chocolate and it was such a great idea and very fun!

We are certainly inspired to share these recipes and techniques with our friends and we especially enjoyed learning about drinks with which we were not yet acquainted. Anna made learning fun and frankly how can you go wrong with a Bad Ass Bartending class! We have upped our game considerably! Cheers!

Mom and daughter at Bad Ass Bartending Class
Mom and daughter at Bad Ass Bartending Class


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13 thoughts on “Handcrafted Cocktails: A Bad Ass Bartending Class”

  1. Handcrafted cocktails are really soaring in popularity. These look amazing and what fun it is to take a class to make them at home! Even when the ingredients seem complicated for a home bartender, they do teach you about the use of various ingredients.

    • So true Irene – I think making cocktails has become a real hobby. I look at it as a part of my cooking repertoire.

  2. This looks like a really fun and useful class. People so love handcrafted cocktails. Any of these creations would be great for a cocktail party or dinner party. Thanks for sharing the recipes!


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