The first written recording of the Martini comes four years after the Martinez’s first appearance, in barman Harry Johnson’s New and Improved Bartender’s Manual. That recipe asks a reader to fill a “large bar glass” with ice, 2 to 3 dashes of gum syrup and bitters (“Boker’s genuine only”), along with Curaçao, vermouth, and Old Tom gin. This interpretation from Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge tries to do justice to Johnson’s recipe using modern ingredients. Most notably, he utilizes corenwyn, a grainy, barrel-aged genever that balances the prominent sugar notes and helps approximate how this drink may have tasted back in the day.
- 6 parts red vermouth, preferably Martini Rosso Vermouth
- 2 parts gin, preferably Plymouth Gin
- 2 parts corenwyn
- 1 part sugar syrup (see Editor's Note)
- 7/20 part gum syrup (see Editor's Note)
- 7/20 part orange Curaçao, preferably Pierre Ferrand Dry Orange Curaçao
Garnish: twist of lemon
- Stir the liquid ingredients together in a mixing glass with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
- Garnish with the twist of lemon.
2 parts sugar
1 part water
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, mix together the sugar and water, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. The syrup can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks.
1 part food-grade gum arabic
2 parts near-boiling water
8 parts sugar
4 parts water
In a bowl, stir together the gum arabic and the near-boiling water. Let dissolve and thicken for at least 2 hours. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, mix together the sugar and water and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Add the gum arabic mixture and boil for 2 minutes. Strain the syrup through a cheesecloth-lined funnel into a heatproof bottle, and then cap. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.