There’s one cocktail that single-handedly takes the cake as the most classic of all cocktails. Ah, yes. The Martini. You’ve seen them on Mad Men, in James Bond movies, and on cocktail napkins in your local bar; but what don’t you know about martinis?
Once again, the martini is a true American cocktail with a history that is slightly hazy. Several people claim to be the first to serve the drink. There’s a story that the bartender from the Knickerbocker Hotel in New York with the last name Martini served John D. Rockefeller the first martini and then there’s also the legend that it is derived from a drink called a Martinez, poured for customers of the Occidental Hotel in San Francisco, who trekked to the town of Martinez, California. While there is no sure way to tell who was the original mixer of the drink, the drink surfaced in bars around the late 19th century and like the other classic cocktails, garnered more recognition at the end of prohibition, when quality gin became available and drink-lovers came out of hiding. The true base for the drink is gin and of course, a true martini is never shaken, but stirred.
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2 1/2 oz Junipero gin
1/2 oz dry vermouth
1 green olive or lemon twist, for garnish
orange or Angostura bitters (optional)
Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker. Stir thoroughly. Strain and pour into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with olives or a twist of your choice.