Introduction to the Martini

Posted in Classics, Cocktails, Gin, Martinis on January 14, 2014


I truly, truly love Martinis. The Martini is the Emperor of all drinks, and the standing symbol of cocktails as a whole. There’s nothing that can compare to a well-crafted Martini, and although it might be difficult to build a taste for such a powerful drink, I encourage you to try one if you have not before. Even if the classic Martini is too strong, perhaps you’ll find a version you like here.

Before going into the recipe for the classic Martini, I’d like to make a couple of side notes. You should always use excellent liquor when making your own cocktails, but in the case of the Martini, it is essential that you use excellent, high-grade gin when making a classical Martini. You can probably find a vermouth you like at a low cost, but you should absolutely NEVER skimp out on the gin. I personally favor Plymouth gin, but you should find a flavor that you personally like.

I would also like to make second side note on the eternal battle: shaken versus stirred. We all know where James Bond’s opinion lands in this debate, but his favored method of preparation – shaking, breaks with tradition, gaining a lot of hate from avid Martini lovers.

As it turns out, the classic Martini is traditionally stirred, and that’s because shaking a drink will affect its texture. A shaken drink will get more air bubbles in it, giving it quite an appetizing frothy look. On the other hand, stirring a drink will leave with a beautiful, clear, crystal sparkle. Shaking a drink will also add kinetic energy and melt a little bit more ice, and leave ice floes floating at the top of your drink, creating more dilution in the process. The difference in taste is minor and for most, very insignificant, but many swear that it makes a big impact in taste

The big advantage in shaking a drink is that it drops the temperature a lot faster. You can make a cocktail equally cold with stirring, but it will take much longer. Some people also prefer the cloudy look as it gives the cocktail a wintery look, but in the end, it all comes down to preference. Give both methods a try, and see which preparation method you like better. In general, traditional recipes will tell you to stir a Martini with gin and shake a Martini with vodka, so that’s what I’m going to do in my recipes.

Stay tuned for some kickass Martini recipes!!

Disclaimer:  I do not own the image of James Bond used for the purpose of this post

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