The Porthole - Crucial Detail

Create good drinks has never been so simple and beautiful

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129,00 €

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The Porthole is a simple, beautiful infusion vessel designed by Martin Kastner of Crucial Detail design studio. It can be used to create striking cocktails, oils, teas, dressings, lemonade, coffee, or any other type of cold infusion.



"The idea for the Porthole was born during a conversation with bar chefs preparing for the opening of the Aviary. We were discussing 'fast infusions' -- cocktails evolving during the course of the time it takes to serve them -- and it occurred to me that what we're really looking for is a window into another world, space, and time. An image of the submarine porthole in Karel Zeman's 1958 movie 'The Fabulous World of Jules Verne' came to my mind and the design direction was set."

The Porthole

A small batch of the Porthole vessels was hand-crafted at Crucial Detail design studio. At the Aviary, it is used to create, display, and serve a variety of time-lapse infusions (for seasonal cocktails). 

Since its debut, the Porthole has gained significant attention.  Aviary cocktails displayed in the Porthole have been featured in dozens of magazines and blogs, including the cover of Food Arts magazine. 

The Porthole in the magazine

Many Aviary guests have requested to purchase the vessel, including some who, when told they couldn't buy one, have taken it upon themselves to ‘liberate’ them from the lounge. That's when I realized that the design and functionality of the Porthole resonates strongly with people. The enthusiastic response to the piece has driven our decision to adopt the Porthole for production. 

The Porthole conception



The technology used to produce the original small batch revolved around our in-house capabilities, utilizing methods suitable for small-scale production. The cost of each unit in the initial batch was over 400 dollars. In order to make the Porthole more accessible, we have sought higher volume manufacturing technologies and have completely redesigned the components to achieve our target price of less than 100 dollars. The finished Porthole is dishwasher safe, durable, and easy to use. We have gone through a rigorous manufacturer selection process and identified a partner with the capacity and experience to produce the Porthole to our high standards.

How to use Porthole



Click on the tab on the left for examples of illustrated recipes



■ Tempered glass porthole, low iron content, FDA grade ABS, stainless steel, FDA grade silicone
■ Exterior dimensions: 17cm x 17cm x 5cm   
■ Inside dimensions: 15cm diameter x 2.5cm depth    
■ Volume: 390ml




■ A Porthole.
■ Three photo-etched stainless steel filter screens of varying densities.
■ One flexible silicone cap to seal the contents for longer term infusions.
■ One hexagon key.
■ A set of thumbscrews that can be used as an alternative to the countersunk screws for faster assembly.
■ Aviary cocktail recipes.


For mounting and usage information, click the tabs on the left.




You have questions ? Look at the FAQ tab on the left, otherwise place them in the "Discussions" tab on the left to benefit the entire community, we will respond as soon as possible !

1. Infused sirups

sirops infusés porthole

Ingredients :

Fruits you want to make a syrup of (strawberry, lemon etc.)

■ Sugar

■ Water


-Bring water to a boil. Dissolve sugar into the boiling water, stirring constantly. Once sugar is dissolved completely, remove pan from heat immediately.

-Allow syrup to cool.

-Load the Porthole with desired ingredients and check for a good seal before adding syrup.

-Infuse for at least 24 hours in a refrigerator. Infusion times will vary with ingredients.


2. Wild mushroom Dashi
recettes 2 porthole

Ingredients :

■ 0.3 oz (9g) Dried shiitake mushrooms

■ 0.6 (18g) Dried morel mushrooms

■ 0.3 oz (7g) Dried oyster mushrooms

■ 0.6oz (17g) Dried Chinese enoki

■ 0.1g (4g) Dried black fungus

■ Water to fill, room temperature


Recipes :

-Fill Porthole with dry ingredients.

-Close the Porthole, and check for a good seal.

-Fill Porthole with water.

-Allow dashi to infuse at least 1 hour at room temperature, or refrigerate infusion overnight before use.


3. Dashi
recette 3 infusion porthole

Ingredients :

■ 6.2oz (175g) Dried baby shrimp

■ 4.2oz (120g) Seasoned kombu envelopes

■ 0.3oz (7g) Bonito flakes

■ Water to fill, room temperature


Recipes :

-Fill Porthole with dry ingredients.

-Close the Porthole, and check for a good seal.

-Fill Porthole with water.

-Allow dashi to infuse at least 1 hour at room temperature, or refrigerate infusion overnight before use


4. Penicillin
recette 4 porthole infusion

Ingredients :

■ 6-8 slices lemon 

■ 4 slices fresh ginger 

■ 1" x 4"(2.5cm x 10cm) slice of honeycomb 

■ 1.5 oz (43g) Lapsang Souchong tea 

■ 5 oz (142g) Johnnie Walker Black Label 

■5 oz (142g) Laphroaig Single Malt Scotch Whisky, 16 yr.


Recipes :

-Wash fruit. Slice lemons into rounds, slice ginger lengthwise. Brew tea according to packet instructions.

-Arrange fresh ingredients on one side inside the Porthole, alternating lemon and ginger slices. Set honeycomb in the open area.

-Close Porthole, tighten screw, squeeze, snug screws, and check for good seal.

-Combine Johnnie Walker, Laphroaig, and Lapsang tea.

-Fill Porthole with combined liquids.

-Infuse for a minimum of 30 minutes before sampling, consume within 4 hours (extended infusion of lemon rind will turn the infusion bitter).

5. Maria Félix

recette 5 porthole fraise infusion

Ingredients :

■ 3 large strawberries

■ ½ medium sized Navel or Valencia orange

■ 2 oz (60g) roasted cacao nibs

■ 7 oz (200g) Tequila Blanco (Herencia Mexicana)

■ 2 3/4 oz (80g) Grand Marnier


Recipes :

-Wash fruit. Quarter strawberries lenghtwise, stem on, and fan-slice them. Cut orange cross-grain into 1/8” thick slices.

-Arrange 6 strawberry fans in Porthole, alternating skin and pulp facing the glass pane. Sprinkle half of cacao nibs on strawberries. Arrange a layer of orange slices. Sprinkle rest of cacao nibs on oranges. Arrange remaining strawberries, lightly packing the Porthole cavity.
-Close Porthole, tighten screw, squeeze, snug screws, and check for good seal.
-Combine tequila and Grand Marnier.
-Fill Porthole with combined liquids.
-Infuse for a minimum of 30 minutes before sampling, consume within 4 hours (extended infusion of orange rind will turn the infusion bitter).



-We highly recommend using Herencia Mexicana Tequila Blanco for this particular cocktail but any quality white tequila with pronounced agave notes should work nicely.
- Sifting the cacao nibs will reduce chocolate dust clouding the infusion.
- To transform María Félix into a spicy La Valentina, add one medium dried chipotle pepper to ingredients.

6. Ginger Rye Mikado

recette 6 mikado infusion porthole

Ingredients :

■ 1 medium sized ginger root

■ 1 lime

■ ¼ oz (35g) maple syrup

■ 10 oz (285g) rye whiskey



- Wash lime and peel it with a vegetable peeler. Remove pith if necessary. Reserve peel. Juice the peeled lime. Strain the juice. Stir lime juice, maple syrup and whiskey together.

-Julienne ginger. Cut reserved lime zest into 3/16" wide strips

- Arrange ginger and lime in the Porthole into a random pattern, lightly packing the Porthole cavity

- Close the Porthole and check for a good seal..

-Fill Porthole with cocktail base.

- Infuse for a minimum of 30 minutes before sampling, enjoy for up to 6 hours straight up, over ice or with a dash of soda.

7. Holiday Mojito



-We highly recommend that users familiarize themselves with the Porthole and its components by testing the Porthole with water before first use.

-Gasket is removable and may become dislodged when the Porthole is disassembled. This is not a reason for concern.

-When reinserting gasket, ensure the square edge of gasket is seated in the groove, rounded edge facing out.

-Tighten first screw with hex key for snug fit.

-Firmly squeeze the glass panes while tightening the second screw for proper seal.

-Squeeze the Porthole around the entire perimeter (like a steering wheel) to ensure that the gasket is properly seated before final tightening.

-Do not overtighten center screw. The screws hold the glass panes in place but gasket compression should come from squeezing the glass panes, not from torquing the screw.

-There are three screens that come with the Porthole. For best flow, always use the coarsest one suitable for your application. For clean pour, pre-sift small particle ingredients such as tea before arranging in the Porthole.

-Do not insert stopper when infusing ingredients that expand in liquid, are carbonated, or that may ferment. Increased pressure inside the Porthole may lead to leaks.

-Observe sanitary practices to avoid food borne illness. Many ingredient combinations, espacially oil infusions, can present a breeding ground for bacteria.


porthole logo

Crucial Detail is a multidisciplinary design practice and production studio, led by Martin Kastner. Crucial Detail's projects range from product development to graphic design, corporate identity, video, and photography.

Kastner, born in the Czech Republic, trained as a blacksmith and spent some time restoring historical metalworks at a castle in Western Bohemia before moving on to natural materials design and sculpture. He founded Crucial Detail in 1998, shortly after his arrival in the US.

He is best known for his Alinea serviceware concepts, which landed him on The Future Laboratory's list of 100 most influential individuals in contemporary design.  The book Alinea, which he designed in collaboration with Naissance Inc., was one of the winners of the Communication Arts Design Annual in 2009, for Best Design Book and was included in Altitude's The Best of Cover Design. His work has been featured in numerous publications including the Gourmet range of Fast Company.

1. Can the Porthole be washed in a dishwater?

Yes. The usual precautions for glass and plastics in a dishwasher apply.


2. Does the Porthole have a cap?

Yes. We're including a flexible silicone cap to seal the contents for longer terms infusions.


3. What are the dimensions of the Porthole ?

Materials: Tempered glass with low iron content, quality FDA ABS, stainless steel, FDA quality silicone

Exterior dimensions: 17cm x 17cm x 5cm

Inside dimensions: 15cm diameter x 2.5cm

Volume: 390ml




You have questions ? Place them in the "Discussions" tab on the left to benefit the entire community, we will respond as soon as possible!


Shipped by the startup within 48 hrs.
Sent from Madrid by economic service.
Delivered in 1 week.
Delivery fees: 15 €.



Right of withdrawal : 30 days from receipt of the order.



If the product is in its original packaging, it has not been used and that it is not damaged or broken. All accessories (and documentation) must be intact and present. The return costs are at the customers expense. For any damaged product, please contact us.



1 year



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