In addition to the smell of Sharpie markers and going on WebMD, one of my absolute favorite things in life is the very first sip of an ice-cold, straight up, extra-dry, Ketel One martini with olives. Because I treasure martinis more than some people probably love their children, I try to limit the number of times and places I order them (R2L and Butcher & Singer both do martinis extremely well. For a more casual atmosphere, the martinis at Twenty Manning are also impressive). Despite the fear of completely ruining this cocktail for myself, I decided to try to make my own…fittingly just in time for the season premiere of Mad Men (I know, I can’t keep track of which TV shows I watch either).
The Classic Vodka Martini*
3 oz Vodka
1 1/2 oz dry vermouth (I love Dolin vermouth but it’s very difficult to find in Philly. If someone knows of a supplier, please let me know!)
Martini olives (I like Mezzetta)
Shake vodka and vermouth together with ice in a shaker. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with three olives (or eight olives, if you’re me because I need to involve food in literally everything) and serve.
I thought I was a really chic 22-year old college student ordering martinis at the Eastern Standard in Boston until I realized I was ordering all wrong and the bartenders probably felt really bad for me (and my student debit card). Below is a list of commonly-used martini terminology:
Straight Up – martini is shaken with ice and then strained into glass (without ice)
On the Rocks – martini is shaken with ice and added to glass with ice (you’re probably over 70 years old if you’re ordering martinis this way. It’s very old school and I respect it).
Dry/Extra Dry – martini is made with little to no vermouth. AKA a socially acceptable way to mask the fact that you’re basically just drinking a glass of vodka
Dirty – olive juice is added to the martini
Extra Dirty – a lot of olive oil juice is added to the martini
With a twist – a twist of lemon is added
With olives – um, olives are added.
*Nothing good comes from drinking more than two of these. Not that I’m speaking from experience…