Master the perfect highball with these simple cocktail tips

(Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Harper's Bazaar)
(Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Harper's Bazaar) /

When was the last time you enjoyed the perfect highball? The classic cocktail usually has a spirit and a sparkling beverage mixer. The one key element sets the highball apart from other cocktails is the glass. As Difford’s Guide says, “highballs are short drinks served tall.”

While a highball glass is key to the perfect highball, the beverage inside the glass is equally as important. Although drinkers can debate their preferred cocktail, a few tips will make a taste difference.

Recently, Anthony Pullen, former bartender and Q Mixers team member, shared some simple cocktail tips to ensure that the perfect highball is always served.

Easy tips to make the perfect highball.


Similar to Difford’s statement, a highball is all about the high ball glass. The shape and height of the glass allow for the better proportions of the ingredients. When the spirit, mixer, and ice are balanced, the taste comes through in each sip.

Since the high ball glass is tall and narrow, it allows the bubbles to hold their carbonation longer. Since the mixer is an integral part of this type of cocktail, those bubbles need to shine.


Just like some people prefer one large ice cube in a cocktail glass, ice is important to the perfect highball. For this cocktail, the ice helps to hold the carbonation, which means the drink keeps that all important fizz. Since a large ice cube minimizes dilution, the carbonation loss is slower.


Since a highball is a simple cocktail, the spirit is quite important. Although you might not want to break out the $200 bottle of whiskey, it is best to skip the well liquor. Quality liquor always makes a difference in a cocktail.


In the perfect highball, the mixer is 2/3 of the cocktail. With a quality spirit, the mixer needs to stand up to that flavor.

Have you ever had an overly sugary mixer? It might feel like a stickiness on your teeth. Picking a mixer that has the right carbonation and isn’t too sweet is the key to the perfect highball. One sip and everyone will taste the difference.

Related Story. Elderflower cocktails are an ode to romance. light

With these tips, the perfect highball can be served from your bar. Are you ready to take a sip and taste the difference?