A Pair of Martinez Riffs, and the Power of Small Recipe Changes
Also: How cocktails are like the clone troopers from Star Wars. (Yes, really.)
This is a newsletter for anyone who likes to make and drink cocktails at home. But perhaps even more than that, it’s a newsletter for people who like to tinker with their cocktails — tweaking and substituting and slightly altering the balance and structure of a drink, customizing and iterating.
Tinkering is how you make old drinks better. It’s also how you make new drinks.
As I have said before and will say again: Most new drinks are just old drinks in slightly altered form. That complicated-looking five-ingredient drink with two liqueurs you’ve never heard of? At root, it’s probably just a Daiquiri or a Margarita or a Manhattan.
To illustrate, then, in this week’s newsletter, we’ll look at two Martinez riffs created by the same bartender. Both of of this week’s drinks are quite similar to each other —and not too far from the Martinez itself. The differences between these drinks are really quite small. Even still, they are distinct and different cocktails, with subtly altered flavor profiles and characters. And they show how much this sort of small, focused tweaking can alter a drink.
But first, let’s talk about Star Wars.
The Good Batch
In the very first Star Wars film, A New Hope, Luke Skywalker’s wisened old Jedi mentor Obi-Wan Kenobi briefly mentions having fought with Luke’s father in the Clone Wars.