Earlier this year, Botanist head bartender Jeff Savage earned the title of Diageo World Class Canada bartender of the year. The Fairmont Pacific Rim mix-master heads to the alcohol producer’s global finals in Europe in September.
Here, he shares his recipe for the Botanist Martini.
"My aim was to create a terroir-inspired martini that highlights the special identity of our city, nestled between the North Shore and Cascadian mountain ranges and the ocean, while fully enveloped by temperate rainforest," Savage says. "It’s also very important to me to stay true to the classic Martini DNA of spirit, vermouth, and bitters.
"The martini takes some of the best flavours of our region and highlights them in an elegant, nuanced way that also showcases some unique techniques our bar team is exceptionally proud of," he says. "We believe that we’ve taken the reigning sovereign of the cocktail world and gotten it lost in the woods.”
The recipe yields a 26-ounce bottle: perfect for cocktail parties. The contents can also be stored in the freezer for up to one month for future home-based Happy Hours.
This one’s not for amateurs.
7 oz Long Table Distillery London Dry Gin
7 oz St. George Terroir Gin
4 ½ oz Berry Bros & Rudd No. 3 London Dry Gin
3 oz Noilly Prat Original Dry Vermouth
1 ½ oz Tio Pepe Fino Sherry
1 ½ oz seaborne tincture
7 oz reverse osmosis water
To make seaborne tincture, combine 1 part spruce tip tincture (50 g spruce tips infused into 1 bottle of vodka for 24 hours), 1 part verbena tincture (50 g dried verbena infused into 1 bottle of vodka for 24 hours), 1 part elderflower liqueur, and 1 part salt water (5 percent salt stirred into water).
Combine ingredients and stir until fully mixed. Keep in freezer until ready to serve. Pour into a martini glass and garnish with cucumber balls. (Savage uses spherical cucumber compressed with absinthe, elderflower, salt and cucumber juice).