June 19 th is World Martini Day. Celebrated around the world, the martini, published in both the Bartender’s Manual and the Modern Bartender is arguably one of the most popular drinks.
The Mixed History of the Martini
For most people, this cocktail has been strongly associated with James Bond, or the eminent Agent 007. Although the beverage was already popular before the Bond franchise took the world by storm, the secret agent did spark the iconic “shaken, not stirred” phrase, and the rest is history.
Truth be told, there isn’t a single person on the planet who can attest to the true start of this legendary cocktail. One popular account states that an Italian bartender named Martini di Arma di Taggia was the brilliant mind who invented the cocktail. Apparently, he was working at the Knickerbocker Hotel in New York City and served regular John D. Rockefeller an “unfamiliar concoction” in 1906. He loved the drink and dubbed it the “martini” after its creator.
Another legend tells the tale of an 1863 Italian vermouth maker who marketed their products under the brand name of Martini. Named after its director, Alessandro Martini, it has been said that this company was the first to bring this alcoholic beverage into the spotlight.
The Classic Martini
With only 3 essential ingredients, a classic martini is one of the easiest cocktails around but does not lack in appeal. Before you begin, make sure your vodka and vermouth are quality - making up 2 of the ingredients, anything else will not make the cut.
- 2 1/2 oz. vodka
- 1/2 oz. dry vermouth
- Green olive or strip lemon zest removed with a peeler, for garnish
- Optional: Freeze martini glass 15 minutes before making the drink.
- For a shaken martini: Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the vodka and vermouth and shake until well chilled. Strain into a martini glass, garnish with olive or lemon peel, and serve.
- For a stirred martini: Pour the vodka and vermouth into a mixing glass or cocktail shaker filled with ice. Stir vigorously, about 20 seconds, until well chilled. Strain into a martini glass, garnish with olive or lemon peel and serve.
Variations on the Martini
One of the most well-known variations is the Cosmopolitan. This version of a martini is a little bit tart, and a little bit sweet flavor with the addition of cranberry juice, lime juice and triple sec and is made using vodka.
- 2 jiggers vodka
- ¾ jigger triple sec
- 1 jigger cranberry juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- Orange peel/twist
- Crushed ice
If it’s sweets you’re craving, try a chocolate martini. It's the perfect post-dinner treat. Top it off with shaved chocolate or a pinch of cocoa powder or get creative with the garnishes. Try adding a strawberry or a sprig of mint, or even crushed Oreos to the rim!
- Cocoa powder or your choice of ingredients to rim glass
- 1 ounce chocolate liqueur
- 1 ounce creme de cacao
- 1 ounce vodka
- 1/2 ounce half-and-half
If martinis aren’t your preferred drink, check out our blogs for other ideas like the Moscow Mule. The associates at Chef’s Corner Store are always happy to answer any questions you have about products or uses. Based in Centennial, CO, Chef’s Corner Store offers a premium selection of products for your kitchen, creating endless possibilities. Visit our website or showroom to learn more.