Episode 010 - The Martini


Interview with Ethan Hall

What’s up cocktail fans. I’m coming at you today with a great summer cocktail. And maybe I shouldn’t be saying A cocktail...but rather THE cocktail.

That’s right, this episode is all about the legendary Martini. And I'm excited to site down with Embitterment Bitters and Modern Bar Cart co-founder Ethan Hall (@ethanjhall). Ethan and I grew up in the cocktail space practicing our drinks on one another. I think he makes a solid, SOLID Martini, and I know you’ll enjoy our banter and his insights.

Not only do we cover the recipe nuances and variations on the martini, but we also delve into some of the historical and cultural forces that have cemented this cocktail as one of the crown jewels of the mixed drinks world.

Show Notes

Ethan’s ideal Martini

Start by chilling your glass. Then, to a stirring pint, add:

  • 2 parts Dry Gin
  • 1 part Dry Vermouth (he prefers Dolin)
  • Several dashes Embitterment Orange Bitters

Stir these until well chilled, then strain into your cocktail glass. Garnish with an expressed orange peel and leave it in for flavor/color.

Martini Variations

The Vodka Martini

Martini with vodka instead of gin

The Dirty Martini

Martini with olive brine and/or olives

The Gibson

Martini garnished with a cocktail onion

The Vesper

Martini with vodka and Lillet Blanc (shaken not stirred)

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Vodka
  • .5 oz Dolin Blanc Vermouth
  • Several Dashes Embitterment Lavender Bitters

Lightning Round Questions

What is your favorite cocktail? And if you can’t name a favorite of all time, what is a cocktail you’ve recently fallen in love with?

The Rob Roy

What is your favorite spirit?

For sipping, rye on a rock. For cocktails, a nice, versatile gin.

If you could have a cocktail with anyone in the world, past or present, who would that person be? Where would you go? What beverage would you enjoy? Paint a picture for our listeners.

Sipping vodka sodas and Campari sodas with Kieth Herring and David Bowie at the rooftop bar of the Odeon Hotel in Cairo, Egypt. Or, alternatively, in the fictional Moe’s Tavern from The Simpsons.

Are there any books about cocktails that have been particularly influential or enjoyable for you?

If you could give any piece of advice to someone who is just starting to learn about or experiment with cocktails, what advice would you give?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions when you’re out at the bar, and use cocktail bartenders as sources of information and inspiration.