1. Refers to the technique of stirring a cocktail with ice, typically in some form of mixing glass. Cocktails are stirred when they contain only alcoholic ingredients, as opposed to non-alcoholic ingredients like fruit juice or egg whites. Stirred cocktails are usually served up in a cocktail glass, but may also be served on the rocks in certain instances.


  • The Manhattan is a stirred cocktail.
  • The Margarita is a shaken cocktail, and should never be stirred.

Usage Note:

Cocktails that are built in their serving glass, like the Gin and Tonic or Highball, are sometimes referred to as “stirred” because they are stirred by the drinker using a straw or stir stick. For the sake of clarity, however, these should generally be referred to as “built.”