Martini - the cocktail that was adopted and nurtured by James Bond

Why do we call a mixed drink a cocktail?

There are several origin theories as noted in Difford's Guide, the two most plausible theories are here
The first relates to cocking up poor quality booze with herbs, bitters and mixes, as Cocktail historian David Wondrich writes “if you had an old horse you were trying to sell, you would put some ginger up it’s butt, and it would cock it’s tail up and be frisky. That was known as cock-tail.”

The second theory states that in an Mexican tavern, English sailors noticed that mixed drinks were stirred with the root of a plant known as cola de gallo, or cock's tail in English. The name came to England with the sailors and then to the USA.

The Martini

When it comes to the crown of the most popular cocktail, Margarita steals the show, and when it is about sophistication and class, Martini steals the limelight

The martini is one of the most iconic cocktails and has been featured in countless movies and TV shows. It's popularity in pop culture can be traced back to the 1950s when the martini became a symbol of sophistication and wealth. In the decades since the martini has become synonymous with Hollywood glamour and is often seen as a "classy" drink. Whether you're looking for a classic gin martini or something a little more unique there's no shortage of ways to make this timeless cocktail.

The History

The Martini is a classic cocktail, it has been around for over 150 years. It is said to have originated in Martinez, San Francisco in the 1860s when a bartender named created a drink called the Martinez. The drink first appeared in Jerry Thomas's 1887 edition of Bartender's Guide. The Martinez was made with gin sweet vermouth and maraschino liqueur and it quickly became a popular drink.
Over the years the recipe for the Martini has changed slightly and today it is made with gin or vodka dry vermouth and a dash of bitters. The Martini is typically served straight up in a martini glass with a twist of lemon or an olive as a garnish.

Martini with three olives

Martini Blanco - Vermouth Martini Blanco - Vermouth

Or did Martini get its name from the Vermouth?

Although there is one story that claims that Martini got its name from the namesake brand Martini Vermouth from Martini & Rossi, but in all probability, no Martini did not get its name from a brand of Vermouth. The drink was actually named after the city of Martinez in California. The original recipe called for gin sweetened vermouth bitters and a dash of maraschino liqueur.
Post James Bond Popularity

Already a cocktail that exuded class and sophistication, the martini gained further popular after it was featured in the James Bond movies. In the movies Bond always ordered his martinis "shaken not stirred." This caught on with the public and soon people were ordering their martinis the same way. The martini is a simple yet elegant drink and it is perfect for any occasion.

Shaken or stirred? Which is actually better?

The two schools of thought on martinis are "shaken" and "stirred" James Bond famously ordered his martinis "shaken not stirred" but is that really the best way to drink a martini?
The main difference between shaken and stirred martinis is the amount of dilution. Shaking a martini with ice cubes will make it more diluted than stirring it. This might be desirable if you want a less strong drink. However, many people believe that shaking a martini ruins the taste of the drink by making it too watery.
Stirring a martini is the traditional way to make one and many people believe it results in a better-tasting drink. Martini aficionados say that stirring allows all the ingredients to blend together without diluting them too much.

So, which is the better way to make a martini? Ultimately, it's up to you.

Martini Shaken or Stirred?


What is a Dry Martini?

A dry martini is a cocktail made with gin and little Vermouth, the lesser the Vermouth, the drier a Martini is. The ratio of gin to vermouth can vary but is typically between 2:1 and 3:1. The cocktail is garnished with a green olive or a twist of lemon peel. Dry Martini gained traction during the 1920s and have been popular ever since.

The dry martini was invented sometime in the late 19th or early 20th century. There are several stories about its origins but the most likely explanation is that it was created by a bartender working at New York's Martini di Arma di Taggia restaurant.

When is a Martini Dirty?

A dirty martini is a martini that has been shaken or stirred with olive brine or olive juice. This gives the drink a slightly salty flavor and a cloudy appearance.

Dirty Martini Dirty Martini

The Perfect Martini The Perfect Martini

What is a Perfect Martini?

To make a perfect Martini start by chilling your glass in the freezer for at least 15 minutes. Then add 2 ounces of gin and 1 ounce of dry vermouth to a shaker filled with ice. Shake well and strain into the chilled glass. Garnish with a green olive or a twist of lemon and enjoy!
But wait, that ideally should be the perfect Martini, a Martini that has been mixed with precision and passion. But a Perfect Martini is something different, it's a Martini prepared with Gin and a 1:1 proportion of Dry and Sweet Vermouth. Not sure why that should be  "perfect", ideally that would have an "ideal" Martini.

What about the Martini Glass?

The martini glass is a classic cocktail glass with a conical shape and a long stem. It is typically used for serving straight-up or "neat" cocktails like the Martini. The origin of the martini glass is unclear but it is believed to date back to the late 19th century. Today martinis are typically served in either a traditional martini glass or a champagne flute, coupe glasses and Nick & Nora glasses, but historically, the Martini Glass existed way before the cocktail came into existence.

The Glass is Martini - the drink is fake The Glass is Martini - the drink is fake

Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca

Martini Fanbase

The Martini is one of the most popular cocktails enjoyed by people all over the world. Notable people who have enjoyed the Martini include Ernest Hemingway Humphrey Bogart and Marilyn Monroe.

Winston Churchill, the British Prime Minister was known to enjoy a Martini or two, or four, before dinner.

Ernest Hemingway, the American author was partial to a dry Martini and even wrote about the cocktail in his novel "The Sun Also Rises"

James Bond, the world's most famous spy enjoys his Martinis shaken not stirred, which of course shows Ian Flaming's love for Martini.

Humphrey Bogart, the Hollywood legend was often seen sipping on a Martini in his iconic film œCasablanca.

Gin or Vodka which is the original spirit of Martini?

The Martini is a classic cocktail that has been enjoyed for generations. It is traditionally made with gin and vermouth and garnished with a green olive or a twist of lemon. However, in recent years the vodka martini has become increasingly popular. This variation is made with vodka instead of gin and is often garnished with a twist of lemon or a green olive. So, which is the original Martini - gin or vodka?

The answer, it turns out depends on who you ask. The first recorded recipe for a Martini appeared in 1887 and called for equal parts of French vermouth and gin. However, this recipe was adapted from an earlier one for a cocktail called the Manhattan. The Manhattan was originally made with whiskey but the recipe was later modified to include gin instead. So, depending on your definition of œoriginal either the gin Martini or the vodka Martini could lay claim to that title

Gin the Herbal Miracle Gin the Herbal Miracle

A Fake Martini A Fake Martini

Martini: Real or Fake? How to identify?

Up until the 1980s Martini was a classic cocktail and then the cocktail revival happened, and by the 90s there were hundreds of iterations of the classic and each one deviating further from the original to the extent that they were no longer Martinis, they retained the name to be eye catchers and gain easy recognition. But for a true-blue cocktail lover, discerning a real Martini from a crown of hundreds of fake Martinis is an absolute necessity, and. There are ways to find out.

Thrillist lists a quick way to identify them (

Found Fruits: It's a Fake

For one, if a Martini has fruits or fruit juices other than Lemon Zest or an olive and olive brine in case of Dirty Martini, it's not a Martini, pineapple juice or a rind or slice of Orange means it's not a Martini.

Has more than four Ingredients: It's a Fake

A Martini has a maximum of four ingredients- gin or vodka, dry vermouth or sweet, olive or lemon zest garnish and maybe an occasional splash of olive juice or a spritz of scotch but, if there are more than that it's time to call the police. Anything beyond that starts to get tricky- especially when it comes to mixology. Too many ingredients can create a murky drink that's hard to decipher. So, when it comes to Martini, sticking to the basics is wisdom.

It's not Clear or slightly murky: It's a Fake

If it's Blue, Pink or any colour other than transparent or slightly pale or foggy yellow, as in the case of Dirty Martini, it's not a Martini. Martinis are not blue, pink or neon.
Even if it's opaque like a chocolate Martini or an Expresso Martini, it's not a Martini, it's just that they are served in the Martini glass, no other semblance is noted.

The Glass is Sugar or Salt Rimmed: Damn Fake

You don't need to rim the glass with sugar or salt for a true Martini. The Martini is traditionally made with gin/vodka and vermouth and it is garnished with an olive or a lemon twist, they are not supposed to taste like candies or don't need a salt balance for there are no bitters in it.

Has sugar or any sweetening syrup: It's a Fake

Martinis are not sweetened or salted, and if there is a syrup in the recipe, it's better not to order it thinking you are going for a Martini, for it is not, it just leverages the iconic name to gain some traction.

It's plain chilled Gin or Vodka with or without the appropriate garnish: It's still a Fake

Martini is Gin or Vodka, Vermouth and a garnish of Lemon zest or an olive, with the occasional olive brine or a spray of scotch, a simple glass of Gin is Gin, a simple glass of Vodka is Vodka, without the Vermouth, it's not a Martini, period.

  • Martini Glass

    A Cocktail Glass is a stemmed glass with an inverted cone bowl used to serve straight up cocktails. Altough the term Cocktail Glass is used interchangeably with Martini Glass, they differ slightly. a Martini Glass is purely conical while a Cocktail Glass is more rounded in shape and the Martini Glass is wider at the mouth and has a taller stem.

    The martini glass has somewhat fallen out of favour in modern times due to its tendency to spill drinks, and the champagne coupe is sometimes used instead.

  • Cocktail Glass

    A Cocktail Glass is a stemmed glass with an inverted cone bowl used to serve straight up cocktails. Altough the term Cocktail Glass is used interchangeably with Martini Glass, they differ slightly. a Martini Glass is purely conical while a Cocktail Glass is more rounded in shape and the Martini Glass is wider at the mouth and has a taller stem.

    The martini glass has somewhat fallen out of favour in modern times due to its tendency to spill drinks, and the champagne coupe is sometimes used instead.

  • Simple Guide to Cocktail Glassware

    When there is no specific glass suggested for a cocktail, it's up to you to chose a glass.
    Either you just go ahead and serve using any glass available to you following these simple rules
    A. Go for Tall or Collins Glasses, Highball Glasses or even Hurricane Glasses for cocktails with loads of non-alcoholic mixes, and those that require crushed or cubed ices,
    B. But if your cocktail is aromatic and liqueur based, and has a complex character that must reach the nose use a wide mouthed Cocktail Glass.
    C. Red Wine Glasses for cocktails that have a Red Wine as the base spirit. Red Wine Glasses have a wider mouth and a long stem, so that the wine can be swirled an aerated to release the aroma while the long stem keeps the fingers away and avoid quick warming of the wine.
    D. White Wine Glasses for cocktails with a White Wine base, since White Wines must not be aerated as much as a Red Wines, since they oxidise fast when in contact with air, White Wine glassware, in contrast to the wide mouthed bowl of a Red Wine Glassware, is narrow with a narrow mouth. A White Wine has much lighter and delicate notes and the narrow mouth and less surface area in contact with air helps retain the aroma.
    E. If your cocktail is based on a Sparkling Wine like Champagne then a Flute Glass is more suitable since a Sparkling Wine is a White Wine with a secondary fermentation that produces the bubbles, and the narrow mouth flute prevents the bubbles from escaping.
    F. If it's winter and you are in the mood for some hot cocktails like the Irish Coffee or Hot Toddy, go for the Irish Coffee Glass, it has a heat resistant glass and a handle.
    G. Martini Glasses for Martinis or "Tinis" in general, but since these glasses have fallen off of favour these days, a Cocktail Glass will be good too.
    H. IF you are serving Margaritas, don't look for Margarita Glass if you don't have one at home, Double Old Fashioned Glass or other glasses are more common these days, for serving Margaritas.
    I. If you are the adventurous one, and are serving shots or shooters, of course the Shot Glass is your choice of glass,
    J. Finally, if you are going all out and serving depth charges and car bomb shots, all you need is a Double Old Fashioned Glass or a Beer Mug for the beer and a shot glass to drop the bomb in.


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About Us

Neel B and Mani, we are a team of two, originally from India and the United States. We are professional software engineers and passionate cocktail enthusiasts. We built this app because we saw a need for a more comprehensive and user-friendly way to find cocktails and bartending recipes. We hope you enjoy using our app as much as we enjoyed making it!

We decided to use our technology skills to help others who were in the same position as us and wanted to experiment with making cocktails at home but didn\u2019t know where to start. We have been working together for more than two years and has managed to collect an extensive library of recipes as well as tips and tricks for making the perfect cocktail.

Neel B is an Electronics and Telecommunications Engineer and martial arts and fitness enthusiast. He is an avid reader, compulsive doodler, and painter. His love for cocktails arises from the art in it and the history that traces the ups and downs of modern civilisation over centuries.

Mani is an ERP and SaaS developer and architect by day and a cocktail enthusiast in her leisure. She holds a Masters in Computer Application and Programming. In addition to writing stories on the history of cocktails and alcohol, she has a special interest in cocktails in literature. She believes that the perfect cocktail can make any moment special.

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