Food - Drink
For A More Savory Martini, Skip The Vodka And The Gin
Martinis typically have a base of either gin or vodka, and it is believed that the drink, derived from the Martinez, was originally a sweet beverage. However, if you’re inspired by the latest trend of spicy, briny martinis, you might want to switch your base to a more savory, yet lesser known, spirit — aquavit.
A Scandinavian spirit, aquavit is infused with caraway, dill, star anise, fennel, coriander, citrus, juniper, or peppercorn. With a woodsy musk and flavor reminiscent of malty rye bread, aquavit can add umami to any cocktail, especially to a martini, as it provides the intensity of gin, just on a more savory scale.
For an aquavit martini, Epicurious suggests using a clear, un-aged aquavit, mixing either two or three parts of it with one part dry vermouth, and adding some caper brine for a “dirtier” rendition. As with all martinis, serve your aquavit martini frosty and in a martini glass — which helps the spirits open up and prevents the ingredients from separating.