China Martini Cocktail: An exotic twist on a classic
You may or may not know that my favourite cocktail is the Gibson Martini. As far as I’m concerned, I could drink those all day long. I’d probably regret it in the morning, but to me they are delicious. There are times though when I want to change things up and this is where the China Martini, one of a myriad of variations on the classic Martini, comes in.
It was early afternoon, and I know its always 5 o’clock somewhere, but on this particular occasion, I wanted something just a little fruitier and lighter than my usual Gibson. I have quite a surfeit of oranges that I hadn’t got round to eating over the course of the week and the last thing I wanted was for them to go to waste.
So off I went to consult my cocktail books to find something that hit the mark. I knew that the base spirit was going to be gin and one of the first ones I found was the China Martini. Now don’t get this confused with a Lychee Martini. The former is a variation on the classic gin martini, the latter is vodka and lychee liqueur in the classic martini proportions (5:1) with a dash of dry vermouth and lychee syrup if you are that way inclined. Whilst they both have their charms and very similar flavour notes due to the lychee liqueur used in both of them, my preference is for the China Martini.
Aside from the obvious reason that I prefer gin cocktails to vodka ones, although they are a nice change from time to time, I found the Lychee Martini rather on the sweet side with the lychee liqueur taking centre stage. With the China Martini, the lychee liqueur was a lot more subtle and was balanced out by the triple sec and dry vermouth. Alas I didn’t have any lychees that I could use to create the double garnish, but I still enjoyed this delicious variation on a Martini.
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CHINA MARTINI COCKTAIL RECIPE
1½ measures gin
½ measure lychee liqueur
½ measure dry vermouth
¼ measure triple sec
Pour ingredients into an ice-filled cocktail shaker and stir well until you have a good frost on the outside of the shaker. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with an elegant twist of orange and lychee.