When we talk about a proper cocktail we are referring to the perfect marriage of ice, glassware, technique and quality ingredients (spirits, liqueurs, wines, fortifieds, bitters and modifiers). We are also talking about the absolute elegance of simple classic cocktails like the Martini, the Gibson, the Boulevardier, the Negroni, or the Americano. These cocktails are only as good as the components you piece together, and no gimmicks or obscure ingredients can cover for that.
As many people around the world look to celebrate the end to a first week back at work, we suggest a Proper Martini for the occasion. The Martini is a drink whose simplicity is misleading, and whose structure and character is often lost due to misconceptions about vermouth. A good vermouth is crucial, and it should be dry. Most inexpensive dry vermouths contain 20-30 grams of sugar per liter; this is due to the low quality wine being used as a base. Only as you work up the quality scale do the vermouths become truly dry (7-15 grams of sugar per liter; compare to the 3-5 grams per liter of many Fino Sherries).
Of course, we must also mindfully pair the gin to our vermouth if we are making a proper drink. Because we have opted for Mancino Vermouth Secco, a dry vermouth with good spice, slight floral notes and a grassy finish, we want to use a clean and classic London Dry gin. This will keep the drink dry and will layer a juniper and peppery spice into the complex flavors of the Mancino Secco. Salute!