Vermouth Recipes

Christmas Martini

Christmas martini

Figured I’d kick-off with this one. It’s an easy drink to mix and you can make up a batch ahead of time if you’re having guests over. This was the first purely Christmastime cocktail I ever tried, and I still love it during the holidays. The peppermint flavor makes it a strictly seasonal drink but one most will really enjoy.

Here we go –

  • 3 oz Gin or Vodka (I prefer gin)
  • ½ oz Dry Vermouth
  • 2 capfuls Peppermint Schnapps

Shake with ice ‘til North Pole cold, strain into one of those Christmas Martini glasses you picked up on sale last year and garnish with a peppermint stick or candy cane.

Bobby Burns

Say this one with a Scottish accent while your pouring them, laddie. It sounds great. Here’s another tasty scotch cocktail that doesn’t call for one of your single malts, a blend will work just fine and dandy. This drink’s perfect for a Dewars, Grants or Cutty Sark. You can serve it up or on the rocks. I prefer the latter; scotch works really well with slowly, melting ice. This is a mellow cocktail that tastes even better as the drink settles down with the ice.

Here we go –

  • 1 oz Scotch
  • ½ oz Dry Vermouth
  • ½ oz Sweet Vermouth
  • dash or two of Benedictine

Stir ingredients in a double old-fashioned glass with ice or shake ingredients in a shaker with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Add a lemon peel garnish on either version.

El Presidente

El Presidente

A perfect drink for the patio, the addition of dry vermouth gives this otherwise almost tropical flavored cocktail a shot of serious. This is a drink for grown-ups, delicious and complicated.
Here we go –

  • 1 ½ oz Light or Dark Rum (up to you and what you prefer)
  • ½ oz Dry Vermouth
  • ½ oz Curacao
  • Dash or two of Grenadine

Shake with ice then serve up in a chilled cocktail glass.


Opening close up

I’m always looking for a new (old) Rye drink. Found this one recently in an old House & Garden’s Drink Guide and immediately dropped what I was doing and mixed a couple up. Re-shingling the roof could just wait a few more minutes. Wow ….the peppery taste of the rye mixing with the sweet of the grenadine worked gangbusters. If you have a bottle of rye in your bar, try this one.

Here we go –

  • 2 oz Rye
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 1 oz Grenadine

Shake with ice ‘til freezing and strain into a cocktail glass, or … shake with ice and pour everything into a rocks glass. I actually prefer this one on the rocks.

Old Pal


Pretty serious drink here. I imagine you will become old pals with whomever you share a few. The Rye will get the tongues wagging; a few and you’ll be baring secrets. Yet another glorious reason to drink Rye, I’m seeing more and more bottles every time I go into a liquor store.

Here we go –

  • 1 ¼ oz Rye
  • 1/2 oz Dry or sweet vermouth (better make one of each & choose your favorite)
  • ½ oz grenadine (Rose’s is fine)

Stir in a cocktail pitcher with ice ‘til very cold, strain into a cocktail glass, garnish with a lemon peel.


Another delightful reason to break out the bottle of Brandy you’ve had on your liquor shelf for the past few years, the Bombay Cocktail is quite a symphony of tastes and flavors. Slightly fruity from the curacao and sweet vermouth, the drink expands upon the second sip to a complex one with the brandy and dry vermouth. There’s a lot going on with this one and you’ll appreciate it.

Here we go –

  • 2 oz Brandy
  • ¼ oz sweet vermouth
  • ¼ oz dry vermouth
  • tsp of Curacao

Shake with plenty of ice in a shaker, strain into cocktail glass.

Abbey Cocktail

Next time you have a friend over who requests a Screwdriver or some other orange-juicy cocktail, offer them an Abbey Cocktail instead. Consider this drink as the beginning of the slow conversion of your guest into a more accepting and experimental drinker. The orange juice component will lull them into a sense of security, a bit of familiar ground. The other ingredients will kick their experience up a notch, hopefully opening up a new dimension of drinking pleasure…(cue Twilight Zone music).

Here we go –

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • 2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • 3-4 dashes of sweet vermouth

Shake with ice in a cocktail shaker, strain into cocktail glass, garnish with a cherry.


gibson 2010

A Martini with Onions instead of Olives, the Gibson can be tweaked a little to stand-alone. I make mine slightly dirty by pouring, maybe a teaspoon of the cocktail onion’s jar brine into the shaker. The slight addition of this mild, onion broth gives the drink the proper punch in the arm. I’ve only recently started drinking these ‘cause I’ve only recently been daring enough to try cocktail onions. How foolish of me, this is a superb cocktail.

Here we go –

  • 2 ½ Ounces of a nice Gin (Bombay or Plymouth come to mind). If you prefer Vodka, then substitute.
  • ¾ Ounce of dry Vermouth
  • add a very small splash of the bottled onion juice

Place ingredients in a shaker with plenty of ice, shake until icy cold. Garnish with a toothpick spearing 2 to 4 cocktail onions.