Friday, October 4, 2013

Sterling's Gold

In honor of one of the greatest TV characters of all time, my boy Roger Sterling, I made a martini (ish thing) to go with my dinner.
Yes, the martini, one of the most abused and bastardized beverages in the world of booze.  These days it seems anything in a martini glass will be called a martini no matter how much blue curacao or sour apple schnapps you dump in it.  Even when you get closer to the heart of the drink, there is still dispute.      There's a segment of the drinking world that gets offended if you call a vodka martini a martini instead of a kangaroo.  I'm not that picky.  If it's got a few ounces of gin or vodka (maybe both, Mr. Bond), a little vermouth, and maybe a dash of bitters, I'm a happy camper.  Tonight I was feeling feisty, though, so I went a little crazy.  Okay, not too crazy, but definitely something a little different.

 I started with my go-to vodka, 42 Below.  Yeah, there's better stuff out there like Tito's, but for the price point and as low on the alcohol chain as vodka is for me, 42 Below is perfect.  For my vermouth, I added Cocchi Americano.  It's technically a fortified wine, but it acts like a vermouth.  It's also on the sweeter side and I normally stick with dry vermouth for a vodka martini.  However, like I said, feeling feisty.  My last ingredient was a few dashes of some black peppercorn bitters I recently made (see previous posts for a general bitters recipe).  Combine, stir with ice, and pour into a chilled martini glass.  Finished with a garnish of jalapeno pepper slices.

I hope Roger, would be proud.  Yeah, yeah, it's not exactly gold in the picture, but it does have a gold tint in real life, my phone's camera just sucks.  I also had to go with a clear spirits because that's how Roger roles.

3 oz Vodka
1/4 oz Cocchi Americano
3 dashes peppercorn bitters
Garnish with jalapeno slices

The pepper really comes out strong with this one.  It plays really well with the Cocchi in a way that I didn't exactly expect.  The mild sweetness of the vermouth is subtle and melts into the peppery bite at the end.  Not a bad way to enjoy a Braves game.

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