Showing posts with label cocktails. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cocktails. Show all posts


On inexpensive vodka

I look in on lifehacker via my news feed aggregator. Today, an entry pointed to Top Shelf Vodka, Bottom Shelf Price, which substantiated something I always suspected. But, the reason I am posting this is this sentence which really tickled my fancy (as we used to say in the old days).
I’d argue that the ultimate mark of a good vodka is that you can pull it out of the freezer, pour yourself a shot, and taste absolutely nothing except for the quick death of a few thousand brain cells.
Okay, maybe the weekend has worn off already.

It is an interesting read. But ignore the “James Bond” and Smirnoff” line. That was a tie-in from the movies, not the novels, which should be consider canon.


Cocktail resource

I just recently found The Cocktail Spirit with Robert Hess. If you are into or want to learn more about cocktail making or drinking, check it out.


Other Cocktails

As I have previously mentioned, a gin Martini is my drink of choice, “up,” with an olive. I prefer Gordon’s, not because it is Bond’s gin of choice (and anyway, the Gordon’s of the original novel’s time was a higher proof), but because I like the taste. I do enjoy other cocktails at times.

Another favorite is a gin Gimlet, a very nice cocktail, made with 2 oz. of gin and 3/4 oz. of Rose’s Lime Juice. There are sweeter versions, but this is the ratio I prefer. (In Raymond Chandlers The Long Goodbye,Terry Lenox tells Philip Marlowe A real Gimlet is half gin and half Roses Lime Juice…”) Again, very cold, up with a lime quarter.

And when I am in a very quiet, contemplative mood, it’s a Vesper. In the novel Casino Royale, Bond ordered thusly:
“Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it’s ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon peel.
Alas, you can’t get Kina Lillet anymore and that’s arguably a lot of booze. I go with the recipe in my signed hardcover copy of Cocktail: The Drinks Bible for the 21st Century.
  • 2 oz. Gordon’s gin
  • 1 oz vodka (I don’t care what kind)
  • 1/2 oz. Lillet blanc
  • a dash of bitters (to simulate the Kina Lillet and to give a light pink glow)


Martinis Are Good for You!

Well, that’s what I hear.

007 Had It Right with the Martinis, from NPR.

The paper referenced is Shaken, not stirred: bioanalytical study of the antioxidant activities of martinis by Trevithick C C Trevithick, M M Chartrand, J Wahlman, F Rahman, M Hirst and J R Trevithick. Another interesting paper that references the first, is The Dry Martini: Chemistry, History, and Assorted Lore written by George B. Kauffman.

And, this for fun:


Martinis, #3

Never order a martini at a “cocktail reception” at a hotel. They are usually not set up for mixing cocktails. Stick to drinks on the rocks or with a mixer. I was hopeful at a recent reception. I saw good gin (Tanqueray) and I saw dry vermouth. So, I asked for a martini on the rocks. (They just do not have any way to properly mix cocktails.) He looked at me with a blank expression. I tried again. Then I said, “I tell you what. Put 3 ounces of this gin in a glass with some ice. Then splash in some of that vermouth there.”

“Oh,” he said to me, “that’s called a Manhattan.”

“Thanks,” I answered, taking my drink.

(Note to those who do not know. A Manhattan is made with whiskey, not gin, and sweet vermouth, not dry. Aside from that, they are identical … in that they are both served cold and in a glass.)

Two corrections. Not just “whiskey,” but rye whiskey (which is what I mean by “whiskey”). And a month or so I did retry asking and did get a real martini (albeit, in a wine glass, not a cocktail glass).


Martinis, #2

Order a martini in Ukraine at your own risk. I’ve not been everywhere, but the places I’ve been don’t seem to get it. This was confirmed by a friend who lives in Odessa. He said to me, “Hey, you like martinis! I had one the other day when visiting a prison. The director insisted I join her in a martini. I thought, ‘Ugh.’ But it was very good. I was surprised. She showed me the bottle. It said ‘Martini’ right on it.”

Ummm. Yeah. I had to tell my friend he still didn’t like martinis. He had a drink, in a cocktail glass, of dry vermouth. What’s strange — but not that strange — is that the prison director thought it was a martini. I suppose it was false sophistication.



I’ve been drinking Martinis off and on ever since Ken – 2 doors down from me in the dorm (1973) – introduced me to them. For some reason, I recall he liked a “dirty martini,” with a bit of the olive brine added. I didn’t know back then its name nor that Franklin Delano Roosevelt drank his in that fashion.

There’s something clean and warming about a Martini. It’s been my drink ever since then. Oh, and one makes a Martini with gin. A Martini has gin. I’d have asked for a vodka Martini if that’s what I’d wanted.