Kathy re-kicked off our Champagne Thursdays last week with her favorite adult beverage and the namesake of this (hopefully, weekly) feature, but now it's time for me to bring you an example of my kind of drink — one with booze, like nature intended.
I do like champagne, but I don't drink it that often. It gives me a wicked headache. When I choose to libate, 95% of the time, I choose an old school classic — a vodka martini, preferably made with Grey Goose, but I'm open to most top shelf vodkas. I've never been one for sweet drinks and always preferred the retro cool factor that a classic martini offers. It's a slow sipper (at least the first one) and isn't full of sugary fruit juices or creamy milky whatnot.
Plus, olives. Mmm… I prefer mine stuffed with blue cheese, if the establishment has them lying about. Ultimately, the olives should be plump (but not huge) and firm, not tiny, hard, speckled or pruned up or that weird shade of green-yellow that happens to olives that sit in a garnish tray too long. If you're going to indulge in what is basically straight, expensive vodka, please — for the love of all that is decent and holy — don't use crapola olives. Do it for the children!
I like my martinis very light on the vermouth. Like, light — a mere suggestion, a hint, a whisper. So I prefer to use a martini mister for the addition of the vermouth to the shaker. Others prefer to add the vermouth, swirl to coat the shaker and then dump it out (which is my second-most preferred method). And yet others feel vermouth should be heavy, as once upon a time a classic martini was almost half vermouth. To that I say, bleh. Also, yuck.
I also am not one of those girls who seductively asks the bartender to “make it dirty”. I like a little “dirty” (meaning, a bit of olive juice) in my martini, but very, very little and find most bartenders tend to be heavy-handed here, so I end up with a murky drink that looks and tastes like seamonkeys. So I just skip it and let my olive garnish add the “dirty” for me.
Anyway, I picked up this recipe from the website of my favorite vodka, Grey Goose. They include orange bitters, which I've never tried, but am intrigued about, so I may ask for that next time!
The Classic Vodka Martini
- 2 parts Grey Goose vodka (or the vodka of your choice)
- 1/2 part Dry Vermouth
- 1 Dash orange bitters
- Fill a shaker with ice.
- Add vermouth. Stir to coat ice and strain out.
- Add Vodka and bitters, if desired, and stir well. (I shake, not stir. I know some people say that “bruises the vodka”, to which I say ,”whatever!”.)
- Strain into a chilled martini glass.
- Present with an olive or lemon twist. (Olives! Three for me, please.)
Feel free to experiment with garnishes. Mix olives and lemon twists or use a fresh bay leaf instead. These additions will give subtle yet unique changes to the cocktail.
You can view a video on the Grey Goose website of their mixologists whipping one up if that blows your dress up.
Finally, please, please drink responsibly — this is straight-up booze, my friends. Have a snack with it or something so you don't make an ass of yourself. Not that I've ever done that. *cough*