At Blue Smoke in New York City, Danny Meyer serves a vodka martini whose glass is first rinsed with Scotch, then balanced by the salty tang of blue cheese–stuffed olives. My take on his martini is, like everything I inhale, inspired by it, but prepared the way I prefer it and do it at home — as cooking and drinking for one should be, i.e. according to one’s own idiosyncratic habits and predilections. And I prefer gin to vodka solely because the latter reminds me of drunken nights in high school playing “Never Have I Ever” with a couple friends in my parents’ basement. The original Bond martini in Ian Fleming’s novels were, anyway, made primarily with gin — shaken, not stirred. And though an ex once told me not to because gin bruises, shake still I do. The perfect martini, for me, clouds at first pour, the satisfying result of chipped ice lacing it like glass.
2 pitted green olives
2 small hunks cold blue cheese
2 1/2 ounces gin, preferably Hendrick’s
Scant 1/2 ounce dry vermouth
Stuff each olive with blue cheese and skewer onto a cocktail pick.
Fill a cocktail shaker or Mason jar with the gin, vermouth, and some ice (I use one king Scotch cube). Shake well. Strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with the olives.
Makes 1 drink.