Wave Goodbye- 2 oz @VermontSpirits, 1 oz Dolin Blanc Vermouth, Dash @UrbanMoonshine Maple Bitters, Tangerine zest

Wave Goodbye:

2 oz. Vodka (Vermont Spirits Gold)
1 oz. Dolin Blanc Vermouth
Dash maple bitters (Urban Moonshine)
Tangerine zest

In a recent article from the LA Times Magazine, Camper English declared that the martini does not exist. More accurately, that the perception and creation of the drink has morphed with time and trends until utterly unrecognizable. This morphology is disconcerting to those averse to change, but we welcome variations so long as the values of quality ingredients, form, and technique remain true to what originally placed their predecessors in the annals of mixology. The tangerine zest adds a really bright citrus nose. The drink has a smooth botanical forward and is mildly sweet.

The Vermont Spirits Gold vodka has an earthen vanilla forward and a cocoa, mildly spicy rye-like finish on account of the maple saps spicy attributes. The vodka is distilled from the sugars of maple sap, and not a flavored vodka. This is not to say that there are not hints of maple flavor in the vodka, as Vermont Spirits only lightly filters the Gold after a triple distillation, but it is not obviously maple (the addition of Urban Moonshine Maple Bitters, a fellow Vermont producer of bitters and tinctures, serves to amplify its flavor). Amazingly, it takes all of the sap from one tree to create one bottle of Vermont Gold, which only flows for less than six weeks a year truly making this vodka a small-batch craft-product by necessity. At around $40 a 750ml, its standard to high priced for a luxury vodka, which may prevent non-vodka drinkers from purchasing, but there is also a 350ml available for around $20, and an excellent option for the curious and adventurous. F. Paul Pacult of The Spirit Journal, writes that it's "worth every bloody cent". Current availability is limited to New England States and Metro New York City but we hope to see it served in more bars and cocktails in the near future. What's your idea of the perfect martini?

Bols Imperial- 1.25 oz @Bolsgenever @BolsPDX, 1.25 oz Lillet, dash each marschno,orange &ango bitter

Bols Imperial:

1.25 oz. Bols Genever
1.25 oz. Lillet
Dash maraschino (Luxardo)
Dash angostura
Dash orange bitters (homemade)

The cocktail above was a riff of The Imperial Cocktail ( recipe and photo below) from The Savoy Cocktail Book. The nose was classic Genever mead. It had a slightly spicy finish from the warm spices of cinnamon, ceylon, and the grains from the genever combined with the faintest hint of maraschino made for a very well-balanced cocktail. The bitters helped to tame the sweetness of the Lillet, as well as bring out the orange notes. The Lillet was much tamer than the vermouth, and represented just enough sweetness.







1.25 oz. Bols Genever
1.25 oz. Vermouth (Dolin)
Dash angostura
Dash maraschino (Luxardo)

The drink has a botanical juniper nose.fruit forward sip.
Greater sweetness level but sharper, not as smooth. Not a bad thing, just a different drink.

The Perfect Cocktail - 1 oz. @HendricksGin, 1 oz. sweet vermouth, 1 oz. dry vermouth

1 oz. Gin* (Hendricks's)
1 oz. French Vermouth (Dolin)
1 oz. Italian Vermouth (Punt E Mes)

Stir with ice. Strain.

*The recipe called for dry gin, but Hendrick's was calling me.

I was making macaroons and flipping through the Savoy Cocktail Book looking for something in a French theme and noticed that French and Italian was the designation for dry and sweet vermouth respectively. This led to further investigation where I learned that vermouths were often referred to in this way as most French vermouths were white and Italian, red. If you did not already know this and if you have been reading this blog and others, you may have noticed that this is not a steadfast rule as there are red French vermouths (Dolin) and white Italian vermouths (Martini and Rossi). However, this guideline is helpful in recreating some of the older vintage cocktails.
While delicious, rich, complex, drinkable, simple, and sublime, I instantly wanted to tinker with this drink (and already had by not sticking with a dry gin) so I'm not sure that I would consider it perfect, but I am conflicted about disagreeing with Mr. Craddock, though sometimes a name is just a name. I think Punt E Mes and Hendrick's go particularly well together and mix with the fruity Dolin for a full-bodied sip. I was craving some bitterness as the drink is on the sweet side. In the next iteration I added Torani Amer and homemade orange bitters.

Perfect Cocktail #2
1 oz. Gin* (Hendricks's)
.75 oz. French Vermouth (Dolin)
.75 oz. Italian Vermouth (Punt E Mes)
.5 oz. Amer Picon (Torani Amer)
1 dash homemade orange bitters

This was a good drink, though quite a different character of drink, with the bitter orange of the Amer and the gentian of the bitters. It also was not quite the flavor I was seeking. A very similar cocktail also worth trying is the Income Tax Cocktail, essentially the Perfect cocktail with orange juice and Angostura bitters.
I eventually settled on

Eye of the Beholder:
1 oz. Gin* (Hendricks's)
.75 oz. French Vermouth (Dolin)
.75 oz. Italian Vermouth (Punt E Mes)
.5 oz. Cynar

This was the drink I was looking for. Sweet, bitter, complex, almost a syrupy velvety richness without being cloying. Perfect? I will leave perfection as an endless pursuit.

Breuckelen- 1 1/2 oz. @BolsGenever, 1/2. oz dry vermouth, 1/4 oz. maraschino, 1/4 oz. amer picon


1 1/2 oz. Bols Genever
1/2 oz. dry vermouth (Dolin)
1/4 oz. Maraschino (Luxardo)
1/4 oz. Amer Picon (Torani Amer)
Dash orange bitters (homemade

This cocktail gets it's name from The Village of Breuckelen in the Netherlands and later, the namesake for, the first "official" municipality in what became New York State, owned by the Dutch (Dutch West India Company) before losing ownership during the British conquest of New Netherlands. "Over time, the name evolved from Breuckelen, to Brockland, to Brocklin, to Brookline, to Brookland and eventually, to Brooklyn"

The drinks nose was mead/citrus from the genever and the bitter orange notes of the Amer. Sip warm like a whiskey and smoothed by the vermouth while retaining spicyness. Swallow funky maraschino tempered again by vermouth. Bitters adds complexity and mingles well with the botanicals of the genever.