The catchphrase that springs to mind for me when discussing martinis is the quintessential James Bond quote referencing how he prefers his martinis, “shaken, not stirred.” Now I have never actually seen a James Bond movie (I know, I know… I’ve been chastised many times!), so maybe his martinis are vodka based and I am way off base by even including this anecdote for the gin martini recipe. The Gin Martini can be translated to a barrel-aged cocktail with a few adjustments to the original recipe as well.
I always find it interesting, though, that the method people in the industry will describe as the actual preferred method for martinis is stirred because shaking changes the elements of the ingredients too much. They will say that simplicity is key in this drink.
Are you a Martini drinker? I can neither confirm nor deny the concept because Martinis are not a drink I imbibe in often, unless I am trying the girly, chocolate or flavored Martinis.
2 ounces dry gin
1 ounce dry vermouth
Olive or Lemon Twist
* Combine the gin and vermouth in a shaker filled halfway with ice, and stir vigorously until well chilled (about 20 seconds).
* Strained into a chilled glass.
* Garnish with olive or lemon twist. (If using the lemon twist, be sure to run the slice over the rim of the glass.)
Barrel-Aged Gin Martini
22 ounces gin
11 ounces dry vermouth
1-liter oak barrel
(For Serving: Ice and Lemon Twists)
* If the barrel is new and dry inside, fill it with water and let stand until watertight (about 24 hours) and drain.
* Fill the barrel with all of the liquid ingredients needed for your cocktail, using a funnel.
* Age the cocktail until it has taken on a softer, rounded but not overly oaky flavor (about 1 month). Taste a sample once a week to ensure that you are not letting it age too long.
* Strain the cocktail through a coffee filter-lined funnel into a glass container.
* If you age a new cocktail in the barrel after a previous one, it may pick up on some of the flavor from the first cocktail aged in the barrel. This can be a fun thing to play around with while aging drinks!
* Store until you are able to enjoy!
* To serve, pour 3 ounces into an ice-filled cocktail shaker and stir until chilled. Strain the drink into a chilled cocktail and serve with an lemon twist.