It doesn’t take me too long to order a cocktail, though I am known for ordering a cocktail while I’m deciding what cocktail to order (not kidding), but I’m still pretty quick to choose, because I immediately eliminate any selections with ice or bubbles. For this reason, I adore the menus that show the outline of the glass it’s served in–I can usually choose my cocktail before the server even gets to the table the first time when I see that! Coupe, Nick & Nora, martini glass–you get the idea.
I love gin too, so a good sour or fresh gimlet will usually be a quick first choice, and any variation on that theme is a welcome change of pace. So spying the Tuxedo No. 2 on a menu recently for the first time ever–without the proportions listed of course–led me to believe I’d be getting a sort of equal-parts drink that would satisfy my sterner negroni impulses with the refreshing sour, or perhaps daisy-style cocktail, that quenches the thirst. So when I saw the drink coming across the room on my server’s tray, I was confused: my sour substitute was see-through!
Though I have drunk many, many (many, many) martinis in my day, the world of martini variations was completely unknown to me. As I raised the frosty glass to my lips, I was still wondering how a concoction with so much stuff in it could still look like gin…then I tasted it & realized–it WAS gin–almost entirely! But because it was small and very, very cold, it went down smooth as silk, and the wonderful variety and balance of the tiny add-ins made it a multi-dimensional taste experience at the same time.
I never did ask what kind of gin they used, but I’m certain if you can get your hands on some Sacred, that would loosen your tie in a hurry. In any case, one of the uber-high end dry gins out there (Elephant? Monkey? Ki No Bi?) would surely be well-suited to this drink, but Plymouth would also be a great fit. The recipe below comes from Difford’s Guide and calls for Rutte Dry Gin which I’ve never had–though I haven’t met too many dry gins that didn’t look good to me! So if you want to kick off the patent-leathers and shed the worries of the day before those sleds hit the ground, give this lovely libation a go.
1/4 teaspoon absinthe
It doesn't really matter how much you use since you're "in & out"ing it, but you don't want to waste.
2 1/4 ounce dry gin
Sacred perhaps? Plymouth is the go-to, however, I recently read that this was originally made with Old Tom. Now that there are some super high-end Old Toms on the market (including Sacred!) I'll be trying that variation of this martini variation!
1/2 ounce white vermouth
Dolin of course
- 1/4 ounce Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
4 dashes Angostura ORANGE Bitters
not to be confused with original Angostura bitters, this has a strong orange aroma & it's wonderful
1 lemon or orange twist
a Luxardo cherry is an option but since a small jar is now $22, I've sworn them off
Put a coupe, Nick & Nora or martini glass in the freezer while you prepare this drink.
With ice, STIR (DO NOT SHAKE) all ingredients EXCEPT the absinthe and the garnish until VERY cold.
Remove glass from freezer, swirl the absinthe around inside the glass and discard remainder. Strain the cocktail into the glass and garnish. Small & cold means you should finish it before it warms much–that’s a must.
NB. I would switch to wine rather than have a second one. Just sayin.