Martini Week: The 50/50 Cocchi Martini
We spent the last week of June walking through a simplified description of the development of the mixed drink, from the sugar+spirit old fashioneds, to the fizzy highballs, to the more complex ‘fancy drinks.’ These fancy drinks, with their multiple ingredients and less rigid proportions, vastly opened up the possibilities for innovations by the simple rule the more variables make for more options.
To our minds (and taste buds), most successful cocktail innovations don’t happen from scratch. They start with an existing cocktail and iterate, changing one thing at a time. The two big ways to modify a cocktail are
- substitute an ingredient,
- modify the proportions.
Today, we’re going to modify the proportions of a martini. While our preferred adjustment to a Manhattan’s proportion is to reverse them, with martini’s we like to go 50/50, half gin and half vermouth. In fact, you don’t need to stick to gin and vermouth. As we learned during a visit to Copycat, mixing different spirits with different fortified wines in 50/50 ratios is a high hit rate way to create simple, well-balanced cocktails with unusual flavor combinations.
Since it’s martini week, we’ll stay with gin, and close to vermouth with our favorite vermouth cousin Cocchi Americano. In 50/50 proportions, these two make a light, sweet, refreshing, low alcohol spin on the martini. Its light touch makes it an especially good martini for people who say they don’t like martinis.
The 50/50 Cocchi Martini Cocktail Recipe
- 1 1/4 oz gin (make it a good one)
- 1 1/4 oz Cocchi Americano
- orange twist, for garnish
- Stir gin and cocchi with ice, long enough for the ice to be half-melted
- Garnish with orange twist