The Biggest Mistake You're Making With Martinis

A martini is a drink that screams class. The perfectly-garnished rim of a conical clear glass oozes debonair, and seems to require a certain sense of grace to be held properly. It's no wonder then that the drink has been linked to royalty in the case of Queen Elizabeth's supposed "martini tunnel," or that it was the signature drink of super spy extraordinaire James Bond.

One of Bond's most ubiquitous drinks was his martini, served "shaken, not stirred." It was apparently taken from the real life preference of Bond's creator Ian Fleming. The Alcohol Professor says that Fleming had his martinis shaken while working as a foreign correspondent in Berlin. He came to enjoy the drink so much that it became a common one ordered by the hero of his book series. Then, once the character was committed to celluloid, it became a catchphrase and common drink order among the masses.

Plenty of well-educated bartenders out there rue the day that Sean Connery first spoke those words though, as they say that proper martinis should never be shaken.

Stirred, not shaken

According to New City Resto, bartenders advise against ordering Bond's classic drink. If you really need to drink like him, why not try a vesper instead? Shaking a spirit forward like a martini is said to over-dilute the boozy cocktail and take away the sharp edge that's supposed to be on the tip of your tongue when it's sipped. Some water and dilution is needed, but it should come from an extended stir rather than a hardy shake.

CBR reports that some Bond fans have speculated that this is done by the world's most famous secret agent in order to purposely have a watered down drink. This would give the appearance that he's drinking more than he is without losing his edge. He's still basically drinking a glass of liquor though so it's hard to believe that adding more water will really keep him that sober.

Punch says that shaking a cocktail is also said to impart too many air bubbles in with the rest of the ingredients, which ruins the silky feel that should be present when enjoying a martini. The tiny ice shards also ruin the drink's appearance by clouding the drink. Stirring still cools, dilutes, and mixes the elements of the drink well without taking away from their flavor.