Martini is a drink well loved across the world for more than a hundred years. Despite the fact that the origin of this drink is still draped in mystery, the drink has evolved over the last century. But, no matter what spirits are used in the making of the cocktail, martini lovers across the world will testify to the fact that no martini is complete without its garnishing. And, as the drink itself has evolved over the years, so has its garnishing.
It has been widely believed that the present day martini has evolved from a drink popular in the 1860s called the Martinez. The recipe for this drink included 4 parts red, sweet Vermouth to 1 part Gin, and was originally garnished with a cherry. Legend also has it that the martini was quite possibly invented by Jerry Thomas, bartender at the Occidental Hotel in California and author of the book The Bon Vivant's Companion: Or How to Mix Drinks that was published in 1887. In his concoction, he used a slice of lemon to garnish his marvelous invention. Another possible variation of the origin of martini attributes the invention to George J. Kappeler, author of 'Modern American Drinks' which was published in 1895. In his invention, he too used a lemon, but only a slice of its peel to garnish his drink.
However, one of the most popular garnish to be used in the Martini has, no doubt, been the olive. If this particular version of the story of the origin of the martini is to be believed, it was invented in the 1870s by Julio Richelieu in his saloon located at Martinez, California for a visiting miner. He named the drink after his visitor's destination and also happened to use an olive as garnish. Since, then began the love affair between the martini and the olive and continues to this day despite the ever evolving recipe of the drink itself.
Today, not only is olive a favored garnish for the martini, it enables you to incorporate other flavors into your drink. Olive, in its natural form is quite capable of being stuffed with ingredients after the seed has been removed. This allows the olive to not only lend its own flavor to the drink, but also that of its stuffing. Over the years, the nature and variety of the stuffing has evolved and today, you have a number of options to try out depending on your personal preferences. This ability of olives to impart the flavor of the stuffing into the drink allows innovation and creativity to flourish in the makings of the drink allowing it to be fresh and new every time it is made. Some of the popular martini olive stuffing include jalapeno, sun dried tomato, feta cheese, pimento, garlic, cheddar cheese, jalapeno cheese, bleu cheese, pitted green berrouni, onions and pitted lemons. You also have the option of using vermouth soaked olives and avoid using vermouth in the drink at all, if you prefer your drink without too much vermouth.
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