The Sri Lankan Arrack Martini – the Serendipitini

   I have been working on this concept for a long time. It’s not a true martini, but it aims to serve a similar purpose, especially for those in Sri Lanka, perhaps without access to gin or vermouth. I resisted pressure to name it the Tamil Tiger Martini (it’s fiery, complex and deadly) as this would feel wholly inappropriate after Sri Lanka’s bitter internal tragedy. … Continue reading The Sri Lankan Arrack Martini – the Serendipitini

Paesan Restaurant, Farringdon, London, 4/5

Cucina povera means ‘poor/poverty kitchen’, and this restaurant specialises in traditional Italian ‘peasant food’. If I was reviewing food and service this place would get full marks. So when I have to mark them down for very small (but crucial) martini points it makes me feel bad. I even added a subjective point to this rating – because they make their own in-house olive-infused gin. … Continue reading Paesan Restaurant, Farringdon, London, 4/5

The Mangoosteeni

Mangoosteen are an unusual looking tropical fruit with a thick, purple skin and soft, sweet white flesh, similar in taste to a lychee. In order to make a martini out of them, I followed a very simple formula similar to a Lychee Martini. Take a tin of mangoosteen (you can find them in specialist Asian supermarkets), then make the martini as follows (you can alter … Continue reading The Mangoosteeni

This post is self-indulgent

Nibbles I don’t actually like the word ‘nibbles’. It sounds frightfully bourgeois. Nonetheless, it’s nice to have something to eat to accompany a martini, especially if it’s been a long day and you’re waiting for dinner. Here are some past examples. The root of all evil: carbs, fat and cheese flavouring, deep-fried. Langoustine with roe. Olives, of course. Nuts. You can’t go wrong with nuts. … Continue reading This post is self-indulgent

The Raitini (cucumber raita martini)

What kind of martini should you serve before a curry? This one. Indian summer? No, just a British one. As much as I love a classic gin martini, sometimes it can leave your mouth just a little too raw before you eat a fiery dish, so I started to contemplate an alternative, something with less alcohol but more flavour to compliment the curry. Of course, … Continue reading The Raitini (cucumber raita martini)

The perfect martini setting

As I have already implied, the act of drinking a martini is almost sacred. If you’re going to consume such a large amount of alcohol in one drink you’ve got to make it count. As such, in addition to the drink itself, the temperature, the accompanying nibbles, etc, you should also consider the location. Unless your temperament suggests otherwise, you wouldn’t want to have one … Continue reading The perfect martini setting