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My Favorite Martini
by Victoria Herd

High Standards | Doing it Right | Favorite Variations

Ah, for the days when it was only gin or vodka! Apple schnapps martini? The hell you say! Save your endless rotation of ingredients for the Margarita, the Daiquiri.

Me, I have faith in a little vermouth, some gin or vodka. I've made a million of them, and even though it took longer than your basic vodka & tonic, I never minded making another.

Straight up or...heaven forbid...over ice?
If you haven't yet learned to drink a martini straight up, go out and do so at once! The key to straight up drinking is the quality of your gin or vodka. This isn't a Cape Cod, okay? You really need to plunk down for the high-end call. The cheap stuff just won't do when you're drinking it practically naked.

Pinkies, Please
The first really good martini I ever had was at the Green Mill, a blues and jazz joint on the north side of Chicago. Charming neighborhood, spent banquette springs, ancient mobster décor. The talent on stage could be heartbreakingly good, or breathtakingly bad, or just plain drunk. But the martinis were always cold and they came in those large martini glasses.

There's no reason in this day and age, with our scientific advances in ceramic engineering, to ever order another martini in a place where they use those little puny martini glasses. Screw the little puny martini glasses.
How can you sip your drink with elan if half of it is on your sleeve?

Bright Ideas:
When you drink, it is permissible to hold the glass near the rim to steady it. Otherwise, it must be held by the stem so as not to warm the drink.

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