So: your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to present a delectable vermouth cocktail for us all to drool over. Sweet/Italian or dry/French vermouth are fair game of course, as are quinquina, aperitif wines like Pineau des Charentes, or for that matter any fortified, aromatized wine such as Lillet (red or white), or Dubonnet (ditto.)
I can’t necessarily promise a delectable cocktail, but I thought this would be a great opportunity to try something new. Vermouth, as most folks will tell (and as I’m sure you’ll read in other MxMo posts) is an incredibly versatile ingredient. Without getting into the nitty-gritty on the correct storage methods, the various types, or the various herbs and flavorings that go into vermouth, the most important thing to know that vermouth brings a lot of complementary flavors to a cocktail.
When I first started getting indoctrinated into the world of classic cocktails, I wasn’t a big fan of vermouth. Maybe I had some not-so-fresh vermouth. Maybe my palate wasn’t as refined as it is now. Regardless, I’m now a vermouth convert.
In wanting to try new a new cocktail, I turned to our old friend the Savoy Cocktail Book. This is a cocktail I’ve wanted to try for a while but for some reason never got around to it.
ATTY Cocktail (p. 25)
1/4 dry vermouth (.50 oz dry vermouth)
1 bar spoon absinthe
3/4 London Dry Gin (1.50 oz London Dry Gin)
1 bar spoon creme de violette
Shake (really? please stir this drink!) with ice, strain into a cocktail glass.
Basically, the ATTY is a 3 to 1 dry martini with a little absinthe and a little creme de violette added to the mix. It isn’t a bad cocktail, the aromatics and herbs of the dry vermouth really shine through. The absinthe gives a slight anise note and the violette adds color. You can see from the photo the light purple hue to the drink. To be honest, the flavor of the violette melds into the herbs of the dry vermouth and gets sort of lost. Definitely stir this drink really well to get it as cold as you can.
And, in Scofflaw’s Den tradition, I can’t just leave you with one drink for MxMo! I decided to try another new cocktail and with Halloween around the corner the following number from Gary Regan’s The Joy of Mixology seemed quite appropriate.
Deadly Sin (p. 245)
1/3oz sweet vermouth
1/4oz maraschino liqueur
1 dash orange bitters
orange twist for garnish
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
The Deadly Sin is definitely a bourbon lovers cocktail. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any oranges in the house so I couldn’t use the peel for a garnish and I think that would really make the drink better. As it was made you get a slight cherry note from the maraschino and the vermouth underscores the inherent sweetness of the bourbon.
And this brings another Mixology Monday to a close. Thanks again to Vidiot for hosting this month!