You know what occurred to me after having a fine lunch with an old friend today? Everyone who wants to be a rich girl needs to know all about martinis. Fortunately for me, you don’t have to be rich to drink a martini. You can even make your own—which is precisely why I’m able to drink them non-stop. Ha ha! Kidding, just kidding.
So, what do beginners need to know about martinis? For starters, this fine beverage is made with gin and dry vermouth (pronounced “ver-mooth”). Gin is a type of liquor flavored with juniper berries, and vermouth is a fortified wine flavored with herbs. Moving right along, a real martini is never truly complete unless garnished with an olive. In some cases, a sliver of lemon peel will do. However, if you want to look like a pro—and we rich-girl wannabes sure do—go with the olive.
For a classic martini, you want to mix four ounces of gin with half an ounce of dry vermouth. Some prefer to go lighter on the vermouth, however, which is perfectly fine. In this case, rather than a four-to-one mix (meaning four parts gin, one part vermouth), go for a five or six-to-one mix. If you want to look like you know all about martinis, don’t mix this drink in a shaker. Serve it straight up (without ice), and by all means, chill that cocktail glass. Please note that at a party, my best friend once tried to serve a martini in a wine glass—unless looking dumb is your thing, avoid such faux pas at all costs. And about the olive—simply slip it into the drink as the last step. If your guests want a “dirty martini,” add a little olive juice to the drink before placing the olive in—this relaxes the taste of the fine drink you just mixed.
Now, more on the glassware. Hopefully we all understand that a martini requires a certain type of glass! If you didn’t know that, well, water under the bridge…but by all means, keep reading and stay focused. A cocktail glass (otherwise known as a martini glass or stem cocktail glass) looks sort of like a wine glass, except rather than a round bowl, it is cone shaped. In addition, whereas wine glasses have a narrow rim, cocktail glasses flare outward. So in laymen’s terms, martini glasses kind of look like an upside down triangle. See examples at a fine online store and just all around fun website to browse–MartiniWare.com. Here, you can truly get a taste of all of the thought and preparation that go into making and serving martinis.
Hopefully you will have some very fun uses for this informative post! When you mix your first martini, be sure to let me know how it goes!