I’ve been enjoying St. George’s Terroir Gin for some time now. It was actually a year ago at a trade show that I first tasted it, walking away after a sip feeling like I had taken “a hike in Northern California” due to the local California botanicals used in making the gin. Just today, I was at this year’s edition of that same trade show, and came across the folks from St. George again. This time, they had some mysterious looking bottles with hangtags marked “Manhattan Project” and “Barrel Aged Martinez.” Of course, I had to try them.
The “Manhattan Project” was a nice barrel-aged cocktail in a bottle, rich and balanced, but really nothing too out of the ordinary. You dig Manhattans? You’ll dig their Manhattan. The Martinez, on the other hand, was like a hiking boot kick in the dusty pants. That Terroir Gin was put to marvelous use in this lightly aged (two weeks) cocktail, mixed with Carpano Antica plus Dolin rouge vermouth, Luxardo Maraschino liqueur, and a bit of bitters. I tasted many things at the show, but this little sip of a new spin on a classic cocktail was what blew me away.
Now, I know you probably don’t have a barrel sitting around at home, but that doesn’t mean you can’t tackle this Terroir Martinez cocktail. The Martinez is a classic cocktail whose typical components are Old Tom gin, Maraschino liqueur, sweet vermouth, and bitters. Of course, there are many variations on this, in the ratio of gin to vermouth, and in the types of gin or vermouth or bitters employed. The key for this iteration is the Terroir Gin, no substitutions allowed. It lends an herbal evergreen entry that segues seamlessly into the sweet dark cherry and vermouth. While St. George uses two different vermouths in their house recipe, I’ll simplify it a bit and just use one vermouth for this home version. Without the barrel aging, this is a bit sharper than the intended version, less mellowed by time, but it still packs the invigorating buzz of a good, vigorous hike.
Terroir Martinez Cocktail Recipe
2 oz St. George Terroir Gin
3/4 oz Dolin rouge vermouth (or other sweet vermouth)
1/4 oz Luxardo Marachino liqueur
Dash Angostura bitters
Fill a mixing glass halfway with ice. Add ingredients and stir very well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Add whatever garnish floats your boat.
* Thanks to Quality Wine and Spirits for hosting another great trade show.