The perfect cocktail may sound like the holy grail but does it mean in cocktail parlance, and how do you go about making it.
To a novice navigating the world of mixed drinks, the term Perfect Cocktail may be a little misleading. Is it referring to the ideal perfectly balanced concoction, a flawless drink recipe or is it some American sitcom? We take a look at how some classic and modern cocktail books define the Perfect Cocktail.
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What is the Perfect Cocktail
1/3 French Vermouth
1/3 Italian vermouth
1/3 Dry Gin
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.
In Mr Boston Official Bartender’s Guide, also known to some as the little red book, the recipe favours more gin while maintaining equal parts between the two styles of vermouth:
1 1/2 oz. gin
1/4 oz. dry vermouth
1/4 oz. sweet vermouth
1 dash Angostura bitters
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
In Cocktail Codex, an invaluable book we have previously reviewed, authored by Alex Day, Nick Fauchald and David Kaplan of Death & Co. bar in New York, the writers go a step further and define complementary vermouth brands for their Perfect Manhattan:
2oz. Rittenhouse rye
1/2 ounce Cocchi Vermouth di Torino
1/2 ounce Dolin dry vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Garnish: 1 lemon twist
Stir all the ingredients over ice, then strain into a chilled Nick & Nora glass. Express the lemon twist over the drink, then set it on the edge of the glass.
So what defines a perfect cocktail? Regardless of the base spirit, it’s as simple as an alcoholic beverage made with equal parts sweet and dry vermouth.