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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCavilia View Post
    We use Gordon's most of the time, the old standby. It was good enough for James Bond, and it's good enough for me. I don't like the martini too dry, so it's about 8 to 1 gin to vermouth. We buy middling-quality vermouth, like Martini & Rossi (we use it for cooking a lot, too, so we buy the big bottle).

    Gin and vermouth in the shaker, with as many ice cubes as it will hold. Shake the hell out of it, so the first sip is really cold -- I've checked with a thermometer occasionally, and 300 vigorous shakes can get it down to around 15F. The extreme cold somehow enhances the purity of the drink.

    Usually an olive (rinsed off lightly, so no excess brine), but sometimes I garnish with a slice of cucumber. The cucumber flavor is readily absorbed into the alcohol - poor man's Hendrick's. Sometimes I use a toothpick to stick together a spear of cucumber, a slice of sweet red pepper and a bit of a scallion, and garnish with that. All the flavors diffuse into the gin, and I figure it qualifies as the salad course that way.

    We also drink them on the rocks sometimes, as a tribute to my late father, who always had them that way. Those get a twist of lemon peel for garnish.

    We occasionally buy more premium gins for a change of pace. Beefeaters is a little peppery, which is nice. Junipero, from Anchor in San Francisco, is even spicier (it's also 99 proof). I like regular Bombay better than the Sapphire, but as I said we don't buy those often. I once tasted something called Old Raj, which has a slight yellow tinge (from saffron). Unbelievably tasty, but very expensive and hard to find (also, 110 proof).

    I like gin and tonic occasionally in hot weather. Decent tonic makes a difference. Schweppes is better than the cheaper brands, IME. I recently bought something called Fever Tree, but haven't tried it yet. If you care about sugar intake, be aware that tonic water is really soda pop, with nearly as much sugar as Coke. Quinine is so bitter that even with all that sugar the predominant flavor is bitter.
    Oh, I had a Junipero martini a few weeks back. Peppery's a good word for it. I thoroughly enjoyed it; very floral with a nice edge.
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  2. #52
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: bobf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeboy389 View Post
    Try a bunch of gins--they can be really different.

    For vermouth, try Noilly-Prat Dry. It's not very expensive, and it's a lot nicer (in my opinion) than Martini and Rossi. M&R is bitter, while I find I could almost drink N-P on its own.
    +1 for N-P. With it, you don't have to leave out the vermouth in order to make a good martini.

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