The Reverse Dry Shake

I’ve been doing some research on the dry shake method–shaking egg and dairy cocktails first without ice and then with ice. The history is pretty well accounted for; Chad Solomon came up with the technique at Pegu Club when trying to save his aching back additional strain, and it spread quickly from there. (Later, the method was discovered in the old book “Bottoms Up”–nothing new under the sun, as usual.)

However, I’ve had some trouble learning the origins of the subsequent “reverse dry shake,” in which egg and dairy cocktails are first shaken with ice, and then without. Does anyone know where/when this technique began?

Personally, I first heard of the technique via Tristan Stephenson’s Curious Bartender blog / book - in or around 2013.


Great topic, and happy to learn that about Chad ! The Reverse Dry Shake was probably influenced by the pastry word (pastry chefs being customers, or in the same team with bartenders in a restaurant or a hotel). As when they whip egg white to make meringue, they always chill the egg white first, so it’s more efficient.

By the way, what is so strange in the bar industry, is to see bartenders arguing about using Dry Shake or Reverse Dry Shake method and talking usually about the visual result they get, and not the taste (this wouldn’t happen in with cook chefs…).

I mean what is really interesting about the Reverse Dry Shake, is you can use 1/4 (10 ml) of the egg white quantity used with a Dry Shake (40 ml - equivalent to one egg white) to get as much foam (the bubble will be more compact and the foam more white with 40 ml than 10 ml).

So it means you will have a more flavorful drink with the Reverse Dry Shake, as it would be like adding 10 ml of water, vs, 40 ml of water into your drink.

Don’t forget fresh egg white have more proteins than pasteurised egg white, so they are more efficient.

The use of eggs in the 19th century drinks was probably a way to feed the customers if the saloon. So when it’s rich/dens, you are not hungry even.

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Interesting. Chad Solomon himself now uses the reverse dry shake at his bar Midnight Rambler in Dallas. While many of those who learned the dry shake from him back in 2006 continue to swear by that method. Irony.


I wouldn’t expect more from him as he’s a a great mixer ! We met at Pegu and he’s in the same vein as Audrey. I had the chance see Chad a month ago in Paris, and I hope to be able to visit their venue with Christy yet unfortunately.

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The first time it popped up on my radar was around 2010 or 2011. I remember Suzy Hoyt being here in New York and discussing with Toby Maloney as something that they were doing at The Violet Hour.

It seemed backwards at the time but I now do it regularly, albeit an adapted version with “crushed” ice.


Interesting. That’s earlier than I would have thought.