This rather simple variation on the Martinez comes from the venerable Savoy Cocktail Book yet again. The drink, so the story goes, was invented for, or perhaps in honor of, Mr. Harry Payne Whitney, sometime in the early decades of the 20th century. Whitney was some rich white dude; his wife, also an heir to the Vanderbilt fortune, went on to found the Whitney Museum (which has a pretty solid collection of Edward Hopper paintings), back when those sorts of people still believed in social responsibility, at least a little. If you still haven’t bucked up and got your hands on a good high-end vermouth, now’s your chance. Well, not so much a chance. Really, it’s more that you owe it to yourself. Trust me. I drink a lot.
1/2 Old Tom gin (Hayman’s)
1/2 Italian vermouth (Carpano Antica)
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Yeah, really. That’s it. It’s indubitably delicious; the Old Tom gin seems to bring out the very best qualities of the vermouth, and vice-versa. This is a good cocktail with which to impress guests – it will make you look like an expert mixologist, and all you have to do is pour two things together. I rank this at the very upper end of four livers. Perfect for when you don’t feel like getting all fancy with hand-squeezed juices and dashes of this and that and the other.