Sunday, August 9, 2009

Good For What Ails You

Alright this is not about wine. This is about comfort. And medicinal properties...Every rare once-in-a-while I indulge in a martini. Recently it was in honor of the loss of a beloved family member who loved my martinis. Today it was because I had a killer pulled muscle in my neck after a Tai-Chi/Pilates/Yoga class that all the ibuprofen and stretching wouldn't alleviate. (Let's ignore the irony of getting a pulled muscle in a relaxation class) And I promise you, a properly administered martini will work wonders for your physiognomy and state of mind. But here's the thing...it needs to be gin. The original martini at Harry's in Venice was gin. James Bond's martini has both gin and vodka. But a proper pain-reduction martini needs to be good gin with a mere whisper of vermouth. Gin is made up of a conglomerate of herbs and spices such as coriander and juniper. Hendrick's is my first choice. Bombay Sapphire my second. Check out the side of a Bombay Sapphire bottle for the list of ingredients. It will make you feel virtuous. Noilly-Prat dry is the perfect vermouth. If you must, Martini & Rossi will suffice. Here's what you do: Put your martini glass in the freezer. Fill a shaker with ice, about a half cup of gin for one big ass martini, a few drops of vermouth, literally a few drops, clamp on the lid and shake the bejesus out of it. You want to end up with ice crystals in it. Pull your glass out of the freezer and do one of the following, throw in two manzanilla olives, or a sliver of lemon zest, or if you are using Hendrick's a thin slice of cucumber. Then pour your icy pain-killer through the strainer into your frosty glass and sip. Breathe deeply. Wait a few minutes. And tell me your muscles aren't melting. But only one per customer. These things are potent.

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