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The Martinez

Posted by Reese on 2008-12-14 @ 04:48pm

Said to be the forefather of the Martini, the Martinez takes the cocktail in a sweeter direction employing sweet vermouth, gin, maraschino and bitters.  The cocktail originated in the late 1800’s and there are a few versions of the tale of its origination.  The first claims that Jerry Thomas created the cocktail for a man destined to Martinez, California.  The second, coming from Martinez, CA itself, claims that a prospector entered a local bar and purchased a bottle of spirits.  Rather than asking for change he asked for a new cocktail created on the spot for him.  The final story claims that a man named Martinez created the cocktail by combining gin and sweet vermouth.  Whatever story is correct we do know that the cocktail was first in print in OH Byron’s book “The Modern Bartender’s Guide” published in 1884.  However, the more well known recipe comes from Jerry Thomas in 1887.  This recipe is where I’ll start my explorations this week.

Jerry Thomas' Martinez Cocktail.

(Use small bar-glass.)

Take 1 dash of Boker's bitters.
2 dashes of Maraschino.
1 pony of Old Tom gin.
1 wine-glass of Vermouth.
2 small lumps of ice. 
Shake up thoroughly, and strain into a large cocktail glass.
Put a quarter of a slice of lemon in the glass, and serve.
If the guest prefers it very sweet, add two dashes of gum syrup.

Thanks to Darcy at The Art of Drink for the recipe.