How To Master The Martini, Shaken or Stirred

How To Master The Martini, Shaken or Stirred
Credit: MGM/20th Century

Guess what, team? Another global “day” is approaching. Are you shocked? You shouldn’t be. There are like 37 each week (slight exaggeration, maybe).

This time, we’re talking about World Martini Day which falls on June 19. If you’ve never gotten your Bond on and sipped on one of these babies, it’s worth knowing there are a few approaches to the cocktail – and there are a couple of industry secrets that can help you master the drink.

For that reason, I chatted with Georgina Mann, Grey Goose Brand Ambassador; Loy Catada, Brand Ambassador for Bacardi-Martini Australia, and the team at Australian Distilling Co. (who have a new Navy Gin on the market at the moment). Here are their top three tips for mastering the cocktail.

1. Temperature matters

Both Catada and the team at the Australian Distilling Co. pointed to an icy temperature as a key factor when building a martini.

Chill your glass before serving and be sure to use large pieces of ice when mixing the cocktail, so it doesn’t become overly diluted. Smaller ice cubes will melt more quickly, you see.

Catada explained that it’s important to learn the right “amount of dilution because it opens up all the flavours of botanicals” when you’re working with gin.

2. Use premium ingredients

Because this cocktail really heroes the core spirit (being gin or vodka) you want to be sure you’re working with a quality product and one that is made up of a flavour profile you enjoy.

That also goes for your choice of vermouth and even your garnish. Which doesn’t have to be an olive, by the way.

Catada explained that when teaching people to make martinis the first question he asks is “do you like olives?” If not, he suggests using a lemon or lime twist as a garnish. Australian Distilling Co. suggests trying orange for something a little different.

3. Bartenders prefer the stirred martini

Mann shared over email that “It’s an unspoken industry standard that a Martini is stirred for greater control over how diluted the cocktail becomes, despite the famous pop-culture reference from James Bond about a Martini being ‘shaken, not stirred’.”

The team at Australian Distilling Co. agrees, sharing that shaking the cocktail can “over dilute” the drink.

Of course, you’re free to choose whichever method you like! But if you leave it to the pros, they’ll probably avoid Bond’s preferred method.

Oh, and if you’d like to be particularly method about your martini habits, you can re-create the Vesper Martini using this recipe here.

Will you be making a martini over the weekend? Let us know your go-to recipe below!

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