Saturday, June 20, 2009

Dive Right In

Hey, that would make a good name for a bar, the Dive Right Inn. One day, though, I will open my Loose Stool Bar @ Grill, home of the world-famous Loose Stool Burger.

But, back to business. The Mysterious Chinese Woman left for a bit yesterday afternoon so I figured it would be a good time to make my Miller's Martini. Maybe I shouldn't have visited Gaid at the Waterfront Ale House first, where I had a couple or three IPA's, the brand of which now escapes me. Maybe I should have had more for lunch than a bowl of popcorn. Maybe I should floss regularly.

Waterfront Ale House on Urbanspoon

But I digress. First, I assembled the essentials, Vya Dry Vermouth, Miller's Gin, Fee Brother's Lemon Bitters, my favorite measuring beaker, and an appropriate sized Martini glass.

The Essentials Assembled

Now, don''t get me wrong. I like my bigger cocktail glasses as well. The beauty on the left (below) is one of three Art Deco ones that I have, all similar but unique. Too big for a Martini or a Manhattan though, unless you like them on the rocks. And I don't. They might be okay for a lighter cocktail, like a Cosmopolitan. At the rate I slurp down Margaritas, they would work for them as well. But the little one on the left, from a set of six that a good friend gave me, is my favorite for the stiff drinks served straight up.

Actually, one of my three art deco glasses was given to me by my Mysterious Sister-In-Law, but I don't remember which one. Bad Bar Man. Okay, let me be a bit more precise. I remember which Mysterious Sister-In-Law gave me the glass, I just don't remember which of the three glasses. They are very similar; the glasses, not the Mysterious Sister-In-Laws.

For Comparison Purposes Only

And my favorite cocktail shaker. They were selling replicas of this at the Museum Of Natural History for about $25 one time. I got this one for one dollar at a flea market, and it is an original. You know it is an old shaker because the recipe for a Martini is just two parts gin to one part Vermouth. Martinis have gotten a lot stronger over the years. To the point where some people simply wash the ice cubes in the Vermouth and then toss it. Others simply coat the inside of the Martini glass with it. For awhile I was using an oil mister (a thing intended for coating a pan with oil) to just spritz the top of the Martini after it was in the glass. Now I like them eight to one with a good Vermouth. Interestingly, though, the recipe on the shaker does call for orange bitters.

My Favorite Shaker With His Little Friend

Time for your trivia lesson. Ernest Hemingway liked his Martinis ice gold and straight up. He also liked them made 12 parts gin to 1 part Vermouth. He called these Montgomery Martinis after British General Sir Bernard Montgomery who, supposedly, refused to attack enemy forces unless he outnumbered them 12 to 1. It was not intended to be an endearment.

Okay, one more, if you insist. Luis Bunuel, considered to be one of Spain's finest directors (he once collaborated on a film with Salvador Dali) kept a bottle of Vermouth on a window sill. He proclaimed that the sunlight passing through the bottle and shining on his glass of gin was enough Vermouth for his liking.

Be that as it may, I prefer a bit of the taste of the Vermouth to come through. James Bond's preferred Martini, which he named the Vesper Martini after a woman he loved who met a tragic fate (don't they all) called for gin, vodka, and Kina Lillet. I don't know if you can get Kina Lillet anymore, but Lillet Blanc is pretty close.

I threw all of the ingredients into my cocktail shaker with a whole ice-cube tray full of ice minus the one cube I used to chill my Martini glass, shook vigorously for several minutes, dumped the ice-water out of the Martini glass, and dumped the Martini in.

A Thing Of Beauty

Makes You Want To Dive Right In

And dive in is just what I did.

Here's Looking At You

It was sunny early this morning when I went out to get the paper, but it seems to be clouding up. I am hoping it doesn't rain, though, because the Mysterious Chinese Woman and I are heading to Coney Island for their annual Mermaid Parade. Harvey Keitel is leading the parade as King Neptune. I think this is far and away the biggest celebrity they have ever had doing this. Can Robert De Niro be far behind.

Actually there is a large gay presence at the Mermaid Parade and, shortly after Robert De Niro was born, his father, also named Robert, came out of the closet. More useless trivia for you. Okay, a bit more, Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando are the only two actors to win an Oscar for playing the same character, Vito Corleone. I am on a roll and just can't stop. Up until Vincent D'Onofrio gained 70 pounds for his role in Full Metal Jacket, De Niro held the record when he gained 60 pounds to play Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull. De Niro lost all of the weight during the filming, which shot the scenes of the older and heavier Jake first and then, as De Niro lost weight, shot the scenes of the younger Jake.

Robert De Niro is only one-quarter Italian.

I am done now, I promise. I hope to get some decent shots of the parade today. I am meeting my friend Allen at Ruby's on the boardwalk at around 1:00 P.M., so that can only lead to trouble. He rented a room in town so, after our day of carousing, he doesn't have to travel back to wherever he comes from. Somewhere in Pennsylvania, I know, because he is a Steelers fan and likes to dress up in their bumblebee colors of black and yellow.

Maybe we can go to Footprints Cafe for some dynamite Carribean food after the parade. I love that place. They also have some staggeringly powerful rum drinks that go down way to well. It might be too crowded though.

Footprints Cafe on Urbanspoon


Rich said...

I usually order a martini "straight up, and not too light on the Vermouth". This often gets me a funny look. I don't mind the larger glasses because I also ask for three olives. Gotta have some solid food when you drink.

Good luck with the parade. Last one I went to had Adam Savage from Mythbusters. I got to shake his hand!

Bar Man said...

I like a single olive or, better yet, a cocktail onion (makes a Martini a Gibson) if I am using a gin like Beefeaters. One with a juniper berry flavor.

The word "gin" derives from "genever," the Dutch word for juniper.

But, if an olive, it should be one without the pimento and fairly small. Not those huge one you often get. Have them on the side.

Rich said...

I've heard that you should always ask for an odd number of olives, never even. I find one too few, 5 much too many and so three it is. I like the flavor of the brine in the martini. Yet the one "dirty martini" I had didn't do it for me. Everything in moderation.

I'm enjoying the trivia BTW, keep it up.

berklingaly said...