The Lydia Martini

When someone orders a Gibson Martini, I instantly hold them in high regard. It’s such a stylish-looking version of the classic martini. The single white cocktail onion floating solemnly in the glass almost makes it look like a religious offering. The sharp flavour is also very distinctive. Furthermore, to know about a Gibson indicates a sophisticated and experienced familiarity with martinis in general, which can … Continue reading The Lydia Martini

An easy guide to making Tsukemono (Japanese pickles)

I sometimes serve pickles alongside a martini as an accompanying snack. A pickled onion is the garnish of a Gibson Martini while I like Polish-style pickled gherkins on the side as well. However, I am also a fan of Japanese pickles – tsukemono / 漬物 – which I tend to find more delicate than their robust European cousins, so I thought they would make an … Continue reading An easy guide to making Tsukemono (Japanese pickles)

Sliced gherkins and Eastern Europe

I’ve mentioned before that I like Eastern European (particularly Polish) bars that serve traditional vodka (kept in the freezer) served with good accompanying nibbles. Sliced pickled gherkins are a very simple but traditional example. They’re quick, crunchy and healthier than crisps or Bombay mix or any of the other things I like to eat with a martini. They are very easy to do at home, … Continue reading Sliced gherkins and Eastern Europe

The Gibson Martini

Very simply, this is a classic martini garnished with a pickled onion. It’s one of my favourites: simple but strikingly different. The somewhat blurry history of the drink indicates that its traditional recipes and potential inspirations are varied and many. In reality the history of most great cocktails is hazy and difficult to recall – testament to the effectiveness of the cocktails themselves. Here is … Continue reading The Gibson Martini

Spicy Martini with Brazilian Peppers

I found some pickled Brazilian ‘little beak’ peppers (pimenta biquinho em conserva) in the supermarket and I knew instantly what to do with them. It’s a very simple variation on a spicy martini recipe I’ve made before. Notable ingredients include tabasco sauce or hot sauce. I use both but you could omit one if you wanted. The hot sauce adds colour, while both add a … Continue reading Spicy Martini with Brazilian Peppers