Thursday, August 20, 2015

Olive-Rosemary Martini

Olive Rosemary Martini

I am a big fan of gin. Or I suppose I should say that I'm a big fan of gin cocktails. Because unlike whiskey, which I will happily drink straight, I've never been the sort to order a gin martini that has been merely waved at a bottle of vermouth. Because I'm usually mixing gins with other things, I don't always really get a sense for their individual flavor profiles. I bought Tanqueray because it was affordable and I liked it well enough. But I'm making a point to branch out. I've already tried GrandTen's Wire Works gin and I really like it. So I decided to buy a bottle from another brand I've been eyeing, St. George.

As you may already know, I'm a sucker for nice bottles, and St. George has most other gins beat with its beautiful Victorian-style label. I found myself at the liquor store looking at the two bottles of their gin I had to choose between: the Botanivore and the Terroir. I knew that the Terroir had a much more distinctive, unusual flavor, so I took a risk and bought it without ever having tried it. I'm glad I did.

St. George Terroir is a very unique, strongly flavored gin. Heavily inspired by the forests of northern California, its main botanicals are Douglas fir, coastal laurel, and sage. It has a deeply piney, earthy taste, like walking through a forest of evergreens. Is it a good go-to, everyday gin? Absolutely not. But it is uniquely delicious.

Olive Rosemary Martini

The strong flavors of St. George Terroir mean that I'll have to think carefully before using it in any cocktail recipes that don't specifically call for it. But I saw this one and thought it might be perfect. I had bookmarked it a while back, impressed by its simplicity. It's just an ordinary gin martini that uses a sprig of fresh rosemary instead of a toothpick for olives. But I know how strong the scent and flavor of fresh rosemary can be. I smell it on my hands for hours after I water my rosemary in the morning. A simple sprig could have a big impact on a martini. And the flavors of St. George Terroir seemed like they would meld perfectly with a rosemary-scented garnish.

Sure enough, I feel like this is a beautiful cocktail to showcase the flavors of this unique gin. If you like gin and have the opportunity to taste St. George Terroir, I highly recommend it. I got to try the Botanivore this past week, and it's also great - a very smooth and tasty gin for other cocktails. I'd like to do a more formal taste-test of a handful of gins sometime, so I can try to get a better sense for the different flavors in each one. But I'd leave St. George Terroir out of that. It's distinctive enough on its own.

Olive Rosemary Martini

Olive-Rosemary Martini

2 oz. gin (I used St. George Terroir)
2 tsp. dry vermouth
1 sprig rosemary
3 black olives

Combine gin and vermouth in a mixing glass with ice. Stir until well chilled. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with the olives speared on the rosemary sprig.

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart.

No comments:

Post a Comment