Cocktail picks are the perfect bar accoutrements: They come in all kinds of shapes and colors and add a little pizazz to any drink you’re making at home. They’re also excellent for utensil-free entertaining: When I set out a cheese board or bowl of cut fruit, a little accompanying cup of picks feels more sophisticated and less wasteful because guests tend to hang on to a designated skewer rather than cycle through a whole pile of wooden ones.
Plus they’re just fun — I love looking over at my bar cart and seeing swim-capped divers, spooky owls, and multicolored gems. In fact, collecting them has become a hobby — I’ve taken to poking around shops wherever I’m traveling, like when I found a stall in Thailand this summer that sold mother-of-pearl picks carved to look like elephants. But they’re also widely available on Etsy and eBay and at home-supply stores like Williams Sonoma. Here are some of the best cocktail picks I own and others I’ve got my eye on.
For another minimalist option, I love these needlelike picks — the same ones that Paula November, the events vice president of Reed Exhibitions and Bar Convent Brooklyn, recommends in our comprehensive guide to bar tools and accessories.
I’ve given these as presents on multiple occasions — for a work friend who’d gotten a promotion and as a housewarming gift to a new neighbor. The divers’ different-colored caps are an easy way to tell whose drink is whose, and they look great balanced on top of a coupe glass.
These gold-and-marble cocktail picks would be particularly elegant stabbed through an orange peel in a classic Manhattan.
It doesn’t get more whimsical — or meta — than olive-shaped cocktail picks.
Joanna Buchanan might be the queen of luxury cocktail picks — seriously, just peruse her website — and these flashy cut-gem picks have been in and out of my shopping cart for months now. They remind me of costume jewelry and Jolly Ranchers (in a good way).
Shaped like the ends of feather-tipped arrows, these would lend some decorative flair to a martini or rocks glass.
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