How to Make a Martini using Gin or Vodka

Martini Madness - How to Make a Pure Martini
To the purist, a martini is always about gin and never about vodka. A martini with vodka as its soul is referred to as a vodkatini. Moreover, even a martini made of gin but “tarnished” with flavors or even a different type of garnish is not considered a pure or traditional martini.

A traditional martini contains gin and dry vermouth. The gin is typically iced cold.

A martini is served in long-stemmed, cone shaped glasses.

A martini is said to be a plain, naked and honest drink. It is acceptable for a martini to be garnished with a lemon peel or a skewered olive on a pick.

When olive juice is added to the naked martini, it is said to be a dirty martini.

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What Gin Brand is Preferred in a Martini?
London Dry Gin is the usual choice for mixing dry martinis.

Holland Gin is closest to the early Dutch formula and is most commonly served straight up or alone on ice. It is a full bodied, malt flavored and highly aromatic. Visit Gin Brands and Types to learn to expand your knowledge of gin.

What Vermouth Brands and Types are Preferred in a Martini?
Dry vermouth is preferred to accompany gin in a martini. Dry vermouth, also referred to as French vermouth, has a pale gold color and a touch of sugar. It is the transforming ingredient in a martini.

There are two other types of vermouth: sweet and half-sweet.
Sweet Vermouth, sometimes referred to as Italian vermouth, can be white (bianco) or red (rosso). It is three times as sweet as dry vermouth.

Half-sweet vermouth, also referred to as semi-sweet vermouth, is spicy and can also be white or red.

What Vodka Brands and Types are Preferred in a Martini?
If you are of the newer martini drinking class, you may still prefer your martini with vodka. Vermouth was instituted, as you now know, to cut the edge off of the gin. However, vermouth is not really needed in a vodka martini since vodka lacks as distinctive a taste as gin. Review our Vodka Brands and Types.

Your Favorite Martini
In the old days, a martini was just a martini: one drink made from gin. If you preferred  your martini extra dry, you passed the vermouth bottle over the glass and added an olive or two. If you preferred your martini dry, you added a splash of dry vermouth. If you disdained dryness altogether, you employed the fruity taste of sweet vermouth. Today, vodka is the preferred ingredient in a martini. Purists call this type of martini a vodkatini. New comers don’t know any better and have succumbed to the marketing of vodka companies worldwide and now use vodka in lieu of gin to make or order their martinis. MartiniMuse has listed just about every martini recipe known to man, about 225 martini recipes in all. Take a look and choose your favorite. If it’s not listed, please email us and we’ll include it.

 




Over 250 Martini Recipes!

Martini of the Month

Holly Jolly Christmas Martini Recipe
Dedicated to Burl Ives

  • 3 oz Gin
  • 1/2 oz Dry Vermouth
  • 1 tspn Peppermint Schnapps
  • 1 small candy cane

Add the gin, vermouth and peppermint schnapps together into a cocktail shaker which is filled halfway with cold, cracked ice. Shake well and then strain the delicious mixture into a chilled cocktail glass. Hang the small candy cane off the side of the rim and voila - you have the Burl Ives' Holly Jolly Christmas Martini.


Burl Ives' Holly Jolly Christmas Martini Recipe

 

Baklava Martini
We take from the Greeks in our celebration of the fall/autumn season with the Baklava Martini. The closest ting to eating this delicious Greek dessert.

  • 1 fluid ounce amaretto liqueur
  • 3 fluid ounces gin
  • 1 fluid ounce creme de cacao
  • 1 1/2 fluid ounces simple syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Combine amaretto, gin, creme de cacao, simple syrup, and cinnamon in a cocktail shaker full of ice. Shake the mixture together and then strain it all into 2 martini glasses.


En-Lighten-Mint Martini
Perfect for Spring and Mother's Day. Hemingway may even have tried one!

  • 1 oz Cucumber Infused Clique Vodka
  • 3 Lemon wheels
  • 3 oz Sparkling water
  • 1 Mint sprig

Muddle infused vodka, 2 lemon wheels and mint sprig. Strain into a tall glass with ice and top with soda water. Garnish with a cucumber strip and lemon wheel.


Clique Vodka En-Lighten-Mint Martini

 

Baklava Martini
We take from the Greeks in our celebration of the fall/autumn season with the Baklava Martini. The closest ting to eating this delicious Greek dessert.

  • 1 fluid ounce amaretto liqueur
  • 3 fluid ounces gin
  • 1 fluid ounce creme de cacao
  • 1 1/2 fluid ounces simple syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Combine amaretto, gin, creme de cacao, simple syrup, and cinnamon in a cocktail shaker full of ice. Shake the mixture together and then strain it all into 2 martini glasses.


Lefty O'Doul's Pineapple Martini Recipe
JC writes in to the Muse:
"a few weeks ago my wife and I were in San Francisco and stopped in Lefty O'Douls for drinks... she had a SKYY infused pineapple martini that she loved... I've looked all over for a recipe and can't find one...do you know of any?"

Well, JC, we were wondering how Lefty O'Doul's made their Pineapple Martini also so we called them. We spoke with Chuck Davis, the Manager/Bartender. He was the bartender who made your pineapple martini.

  • 1 oz. SKYY pineapple vodka
  • 1/8 oz. dry vermouth
  • Chill the mixed concoction
  • Serve it all up in a martini shell glass
  • Optional: add a slice of pineapple on side of glass as a garnish


Manmohan Prashar's Real Martini Recipe
Manmohan Prashar emailed us this simple, pure and tasty martini recipe:

  • 1 part red dry vermouth
  • 2 part vodka
  • 3 part gin

Step 1: start with vermouth; measure 1 part, drop a few drops in a chilled cocktail glass; rotate the glass so that vermouth is spread on the glass walls. Pour rest of the vermouth left in the measure glass in cocktail shaker.

Step 2: Add 2 parts vodka to the cocktail shaker.

Step 3: Add 3 part gin to the cocktail shaker.

Shake well and serve
Cheers!!
Manmohan Prashar


  Meadow Lark Vodka Martini

Mike Sherwood of Santa Rosa Spirits writes The Muse that he's been experimenting with two infusions from Sub Rosa Spirits. Nothing radical and, that he says, is the point. He likes mixing Elderflower Liqueur with Tarragon Vodka. The Saffron and Cointreau seemed destined as partners, "very lush and warming", he says. Mike adds a hint of fine freshly ground black pepper into a plain Tarragon martini. Grinding in white pepper also works well. The martini is meant to be understated which brings out the delicate flavor of the tarragon.

  • 1/4 oz. St. Germaine Elderflower Liqueur
  • 2 oz. Sub Rosa Tarragon Vodka
  • splash of lemon juice
  • 2 oz. soda water

Combine all ingredients into a martini glass over cold ice - check out Swank Martini Glasses for a nice selection of classic, cool and artsy martini glasses - and shake. The elderflowers bring imagery of a fresh summer meadow at sunrise. The Meadow Lark is Oregon's state bird.


  The Marseille Airport Martini

The Marseille Airport Martini may require 1-2 ounces of ginger ale or a juice of your liking. The weekend bartender at Serattos make this one with a little soda water mixed in. Soda cut the sweetness of the orange liqueur but need to play with this one a little more. The Marseille Airport Martini has a pale yellow orange cast to if from the Saffron vodka and Cointreau. The aroma is warm and familiar yet not completely identifiable due to the toasted cumin wafting over the orange liqueur and fresh lime. Think Golden Cosmopolitan minus the juice.

  • 2 ounces Sub Rosa Saffron infused vodka
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • 1/2 ounce fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 2 dashes Peychaud's bitters (Orange bitters will work as well)

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with cracked ice. Shake and strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with a long twist of lime.


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