I promised my gear guides would be “living,” whatever that means. The first example of that has taken hold. The Cocktail Kingdom double strainer was perfectly nice. Unfortunately, there’s a better option out there. The RSVP Endurance Conical Strainer is available in 3”, 4”, and 5” models, ranging from about $8 to $12.
The appropriate size is hard to determine and depends a bit on style and drinks. The 3” is my favorite of the group, but a fast pour of a slow-straining beverage may overwhelm the cone. If one shakes a martini (wait, what? nobody should ever do that), this won’t be a problem, but a chunky egg drink with a lot of small ice bits may overflow it in a fast pour. At the same time, the 5” model might seem a bit huge and unwieldy.
As to why this strainer unseats the previous camp, there are really two reasons. The first is that the mesh pattern in the RSVP strainer is much finer. The Cocktail Kingdom model does admirably, but some small shards of ice can still sneak through. The mesh on the RSVP strainer is fine enough that I’ve yet to detect ice in the finished product.
Second, the RSVP strainer uses larger-gauge handles. This provides a more rugged feel and better balance. Don’t get me wrong, the design is more or less the same. There’s a mesh basket with a crimped rim and some shitty spot-welds. Still, the RSVP strainer feels a lot tougher; more the tool than the toy, and for that reason the bare minimum guide is getting updated: This is the new double strainer to get.