There’s nothing quite as perfect of that first sip of a freshly poured martini, with frosted glass and a bracing booziness. But as the drink sits, it warms up, eventually, leaving a glass of luke-warm gin.
Many would consider it sacrilegious—a bastardization of the classic drink.
But martinis are already a drink that requires personalization. Sweet vermouth, dry vermouth, Old Tom gin, dry gin. Dirty, twist: the only thing they seem to share is served in a coupe or a Martini glass.
In the late ‘50s, early ‘60s, people got wind of the martini on the rocks. Brands started sharing the recipes that make their gin or vodka the best ‘martini-on-the-rocks’. Seagram’s rolled out a full marketing campaign saying the martini on the rock, “does not happen by chance, but by dint of skill and perseverance.”
But somehow, the trend died. While ordering a Manhattan or Negroni “up” or “on the rocks” is normal these days, Martinis on the rocks aren’t as commonplace.
Ice keeps things cold for longer—far longer than an average martini served straight up. The rebuttal to this would be, well, it gets diluted. And it does, but doesn’t an Old Fashioned, or any other iced cocktail?
Plus, a martini on the rocks requires no shaking and no stirring. For home bartenders (which is everyone, given the unfolding of 2020) there are no cocktail shakers, bar spoons, or strainers to clean. An effortless operation!
So if you need me as we move into Election Season, I’ll be drinking a Martini on the rocks.