The martini drinker. We all know the type: tall, dark, handsome, usually with a wallet that lets you know how rich he is before it’s even opened. Want to be a part of that crowd? Don’t be intimidated, here’s everything you need to know.
What’s in a Martini?
A traditional martini is made with gin and vermouth. If you’re new to the world of chic cocktails, it might be helpful to know that gin is a spirit made from grains and infused with juniper berries for flavor, and vermouth is a fortified wine (which means it’s been topped with a stronger, more neutral flavored alcohol), and can be sweet or dry. The dry kind is used for martinis.
To make a standard martini, a 50/50 split of gin and vermouth is mixed on ice and served with a chilled glass and a garnish. Simple. However, different variations can include different ingredients. Here are some popular ones you might’ve overheard your cool aunt ordering:
Classic Martini Recipes
Apple Martini: The cool girls call it an appletini. This variation uses vodka, lemon juice, and either apple juice, cider, or apple liqueur for a classic granny smith flavor.
Cosmopolitan: The ‘cosmo’ is made with vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice, lime juice, and rosé to fame for its tangy flavor (and its prevalence in the Sex and the City franchise).
Dirty Martini: Mixed with olive brine for a salty taste. Think savory, not sweet.
Espresso Martini: This is one of the most popular variations amongst the newly-21 crowd these days. Swap the vermouth for espresso and the gin for vodka (or mezcal if you feel like experimenting). Add some simple syrup for sweetness and garnish with coffee beans.
Lemon Drop Martini: Have a sweet tooth? Swap the vermouth for lemon juice and sugar. Think: a sophisticated, alcoholic lemonade.
Lychee Martini: A personal favorite. Add lychee juice or liqueur and garnish with lychee for a light and sweet take on the classic martini.
Martini with a Twist: Just a tiny variation from a traditional martini, but ordering it this way will ensure it comes with a lemon peel garnish instead of olives for a more citrusy taste.
Pornstar Martini: Don’t let the name fool you, the only semblance of a martini here is the glass it’s served in. The pornstar martini uses vanilla vodka, passion fruit liqueur, passion fruit puree, lime juice and simple syrup (and usually comes with a side of sparkling wine.) Plus it’s fun to say.
Vodka Martini: Easy. Swap the gin for vodka. Vodka’s flavor is a bit smoother, making this variation a more popular option for today’s bar crowd.
No matter what flavor you’re searching for, you can find it in a martini. Don’t be intimidated by liquors you can’t pronounce or ingredients you’ve never heard of, and try one the next time you’re out on the town! But first, leave a comment below and let us know which type of martini is your favorite.