What is a martini?
Essentially, the martini is a mix of London dry gin or vodka and French dry vermouth, stirred over ice, strained and poured into an ice-cold cocktail glass. Lemon zest or a good quality green olive is the usual garnish.
Who invented the martini?
Its invention is not attributed to any one person. Although one widely regarded idea is that the martini evolved from a martinez cocktail that was popular in the late 19th century, which used a sweetened-style gin as its base. This was included in The Bartender’s Guide by ‘Professor’ Jerry Thomas, published in 1887.
How do you make a martini?
There are several variations of the classic martini, and also many modern variations.
Dry martini: Ask for a dry martini and expect a drink with very little vermouth – conventionally in a 10:1 ratio or less with the gin.
Dirty martini: ‘Dirty’ will come with a little olive brine stirred into the gin and vermouth, while a Gibson is made with a silverskin onion and Plymouth gin.
Which gin do you use to make a martini?
London dry gin is the classic gin used for a martini, but one of my favourites is Plymouth or Sipsmith London dry gin with Noilly Prat, served straight-up with a lemon twist. It’s simple and classic. Check out our favourite British gins here…
It’s easy to create your own cocktails for entertaining at home. Keep it simple with a vodka martini – this one gets an extra kick from Grand Marnier and is flavoured with vanilla.
This velvety smooth, gingerbread cocktail is the perfect warmer for chilly days – or as a cheeky, alcoholic alternative to pudding. Sit back and let the bartender do the work at Brighton’s award-winning Pintxo People (pintxopeople.co.uk), and Pinchito Tapas in east London (pinchito.co.uk), or mix one up in a matter of minutes at home.
This cocktail recipe from LCC Shoreditch uses fat-washed (bacon-infused) Jack Daniel’s, first done in New York in the 90s for a Benton’s Old Fashioned. Mix that with maple syrup and you’ve got breakfast in a glass.
Martinis are one of our favourite mixed alcoholic drinks. We’ve added marmalade and lemon juice to this cocktail recipe for for an extra kick of flavour. Enjoy!
Decorate this light and airy cocktail with white elderflowers if you have an elder bush near you. This recipe serves one, but can easily be multiplied if you’ve got friends coming over.
Dark chocolate is the star of this boozy cocktail recipe, made with just three ingredients plus ice.
This feature was published in June 2015
Photographs: Ant Duncan, Jason Bailey