Thursday, November 30, 2006

Flip a coin

The Man Who Saved Britain from the trauma of Empire Withdrawal, didn't know up from down about martinis, according to the Huns:

According to some experts in Germany, Bond's eccentric drinking habits are proof that he enjoys breaking the rules of alcoholic beverage etiquette. It seems he orders his martini "the wrong way," contravening what every novice barkeeper is taught.

"A classic Martini is stirred. This is always done when two alcohols are mixed with one another," explains Bernd Ohlmeier, a Hamburg-based of the respected German Barkeeper Union (DBU).

Cocktails are generally shaken when two liquids of a different consistency are combined, such as a clear alcohol and a cloudy juice. From a taste point of view, there is scarcely any difference between a stirred or a shaken Martini, admit the top barkeepers.

"The shaking motion does make the ice cubes melt more quickly and this may diminish the flavour of the drink," said Ulf Neuhaus, another expert who heads the DBU's Dresden branch.

These nuances are too subtle for most people's taste buds to detect, said Neuhaus, who pointed out that the easiest way to spot the two types of martini drink is by looking at them - shaken martinis appear cloudier than those which are stirred.

There is also disagreement over what constitutes a genuine "James Bond-style martini." The classic martini drink consists of four centilitres of gin along with two centilitres of vermouth and an olive, said Ohlmeier. Mixing four parts of vodka with two of vermouth results in a rather un-Bond-like creation known as a "vodkatini."

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