The Martinez is widely considered to be the predecessor to the classic gin martini. Part Manhattan, part Martini – it first appeared in print in 1884. The most commonly sipped version enjoyed today is most often credited to legendary bartender Jerry Thomas but the city of Martinez, California claims that a local bartender came up with the recipe.
It’s a classic for a reason – a spirited, stirred cocktail that balances sweetness and bitterness. Made with gin, preferably of the Old Tom variety that is slightly sweeter and less Juniper-forward than a London Dry Gin.
Sweet vermouth and maraschino cherry liqueur bring a multidimensional sweetness that balances the herbal component of the gin and bitterness from the Angostura.
I whipped this up on virtual happy hour on Tuesday (my 76th episode since quarantine started in Ottawa) and totally forgot to add the bitters. My tagline on virtual happy hour is, “it’s about participation, not perfection,” – never more true than on Tuesday.
It’s truly hard to believe that I will have completed 80 episodes of virtual happy hour since March 16th on this coming Saturday. I’m not sure how much longer it will be before we’re able to return to working from an office but I think, for the sake of my liver, I’ll probably have to hang up my bar tools after episode 100. Or at least cut back to once or twice a week, instead of five days a week.
Don’t worry, I’ll pull together a super cut of all the best moments for your viewing pleasure. My self-care Saturday has easily been the most popular weekly edition. In case you’ve missed it, my self-care Saturday is an off-beat, unexpected combination of cocktail creation and self-care, I’ve done an episode in a sheet mask, another with a back massager, and even one while doing yoga.
- 1½ oz gin, preferably Old Tom style
- 1½ oz sweet vermouth
- ¼ oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 orange twist, for garnish
Stir all ingredients, except orange twist, over ice. Strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with orange twist.