Alex Guarnaschelli Punches Up Martinis With An Unconventional Brine

Martinis are rather simple but sophisticated cocktails. Watching "Sex in the City" character Carrie Bradshaw sip on her cosmopolitan inspired a generation of females to embrace and emulate Bradshaw by moseying up to the bar and ordering up a ruby red martini. According to Pure Wow, Bradshaw may not have invented this cocktail, but she certainly put it on the map. What is it about the martini that makes us feel like reading a novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald? Stanley Tucci told Vogue, "You watch somebody make a martini properly, and it's really beautiful. It's ceremonial and elegant — it elevates a moment. Your whole day gets better. And it's not the booze, a huge part of it is the gesture of it."

Yet as simple as they are, this drink offers those who imbibe it options to make it palate specific. Per Delishably, martinis are made with either gin or vodka and mixed with a little vermouth. While most people dwell on the James Bond-esque trait of shaken or stirred, others note if a martini is served with a twist of lemon or an olive. Of course, if it's a dirty martini, the bartender will mix in some salty olive juice, but olive brine isn't the only brine on the block you should consider using in your next martini. Celebrity chef, Alex Guarnaschelli uses an unconventional brine when she makes hers, and this ingredient swap will instantly upgrade your next martini.

It will add a salty punch

Alex Guarnaschelli revealed to Food & Wine she likes to serve up some "seriously dirty" martinis made with a "floral gin." But the celebrity chef went on to explain she also has a secret ingredient she adds to her dirty martinis to really make your taste buds pop. Guarnaschelli adds caper brine to her martinis. If you are unfamiliar, Esquire explains that capers are simply a pickled flower bud that comes from a caper. They are quite savory in taste and if left to flower, the caper produces a fruit known as a caperberry which can be pickled and used in recipes and drinks. 

Thrillist shares if you are a fan of salt, caper brine is the martini brine for you. However, if you like the idea of using capers, but want something a little milder, Esquire goes on to share if you use the brine from caperberries, it won't be quite as salty and your martini's flavor will become more "complex." Guarnaschelli is not alone in mixing up her martini brine. Rachel Ray's husband, John Cusimano, turns to pickle juice and onion brine to create what Ray calls one seriously "filthy dirty martini." And Thrillist suggests trying the brine from the jar of banana peppers you keep for sandwich maker or the juices leftover from your pickled jalapeños to spice it up.