Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

The "Best" Dry Martini


weinoo
 Share

Recommended Posts

@Duvel, I think that some of the problem here, if we really want to call it a problem, is that you're thinking of the 25% as pre-scriptive, whereas Wondrich intends it as de-scriptive. He's assuming 25% dilution because that's what's expected. But if you read the second part of the Cooking Issues post to which @weinoo linked, you'll see that the de-scription for a batched Manhattan calls for 50% dilution, and an ABV of only 20%. (The blog also exposes the over-simplification I committed in my recent post about determining dilution.) 

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Dave Scantland
Executive director
dscantland@eGstaff.org
eG Ethics signatory

Eat more chicken skin.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think one thing we can all agree on, is that if @Duvel is going to do these experiments with dilution, it would be good to do a bunch of them on the same day/night. That way, @Duvel, you can get really smashed - just no driving!

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am a big fan of dirty martinis however I don’t often drink them because if I have more than one I can easily get shitfaced.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm not trying to be dismissive of the minds behind the 25% figure. Just pointing out that it is at best an average. Or as Dave the Cook suggests, a goal with certain recipes. 

 

The Cooking Issues link (Thanks Mitch!) shows much of what D.A. talks about in his book. 

 

A few takeaways:

 

  • Size and shape of the ice cubes matter, but not in the ways that many people assume. More/smaller ice cubes chill faster, but not more. They also tend to dilute more, but for a specific reason: bar ice is wet (it's always hanging out at 0°C) and more surface area means there's more water clinging to it. That water adds to dilution without contributing to chilling. Dave recommends shaking the water off of wet ice using a strainer.
  • Temperature of the ice is irrelevant. Virtually all of ice's chilling power comes from its latent heat of fusion (the energy required to melt it). Making it 10 or 20 degrees colder will have little effect. Except, curiously ...
  • Ice colder than 0°C will chill your drink more slowly than 0°C ice. Because science! It will take a bit of time to warm to 0°, during which it does some very inefficient chilling. Only when it hits 0 and starts to melt does the powerful chilling begin. However ...
  • Chilling is asymptotic—you'll eventually reach a fixed minimum temperature when shaking or stirring.
  • But stirred drinks chill slowly enough that ice cubes matter. Because no one stirs long enough to hit that asymptotic low temperature with big ice cubes. To hit the temperature you want consistently when stirring, you need to be consistent about ice cube size and shape, stirring speed, and time.
  • The nuances of shaking technique might have an effect on drink texture, but they don't affect the temperature or dilution—provided you shake long enough ... but not much too long. But we were talking about Martinis, and Sean Connery is dead. 
  • Anything that adds significant heat to the drink from the outside will cause extra melting and dilution. This includes a hot ambient temperature, spending way too much time stirring / shaking / hanging out, or using an unchilled vessel that has a lot of thermal mass, like a classic stirring glass. 
Edited by paulraphael (log)
  • Like 3

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, Duvel said:


Thanks ! I would have probably just used a refraktometer, but your method certainly works as well  …

 

 

A refractometer would be tricky, because there's both sugar and alcohol in there. You won't get an absolute measurement that means anything. You'd have to get a before and after reading, and do some fancy math. I think using weight or volume would be easier and more accurate.

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

They also tend to dilute more, but for a specific reason: bar ice is wet (it's always hanging out at 0°C) and more surface area means there's more water clinging to it. That water adds to dilution without contributing to chilling. Dave recommends shaking the water off of wet ice using a strainer.


That was indeed as enlightening as surprising to me. I would have assumed ice is employed significantly colder. With ice at 0 oC and in equilibrium with surrounding water also the surface area (on a microscale) will be rather smooth …

 

1 hour ago, paulraphael said:
  • Temperature of the ice is irrelevant. Virtually all of ice's chilling power comes from its latent heat of fusion (the energy required to melt it). Making it 10 or 20 degrees colder will have little effect. Except, curiously ...
  • Ice colder than 0°C will chill your drink more slowly than 0°C ice. Because science! It will take a bit of time to warm to 0°, during which it does some very inefficient chilling. Only when it hits 0 and starts to melt does the powerful chilling begin. However ...


This part I disagree with. For ice residing in the finished drink I agree - cooling (plus dilution) comes from the phase transition of the ice/water and is significantly higher that the pure equilibration of temperatures, but …

 

Chilling the drink rapidly is (if done properly) a simple heat transfer process. So mass x temperature of coolant vs. mass x temperature of alcoholic drink.

However, I understand that in a bar context with (as I have learned now) 0 oC ice and most likely the limited use of ice for cooling pure heat transfer may give way to a mixed heat transfer/phase transition process, and that will less depend on the ice temperature (in the narrow gap that the bar allows). C.f. above Gedankenexperiment on @weinoos Duveltini …

 

1 hour ago, paulraphael said:

Anything that adds significant heat to the drink from the outside will cause extra melting and dilution. This includes a hot ambient temperature, spending way too much time stirring / shaking / hanging out, or using an unchilled vessel that has a lot of thermal mass, like a classic stirring glass. 

 
Amen !

Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

A refractometer would be tricky, because there's both sugar and alcohol in there. You won't get an absolute measurement that means anything. You'd have to get a before and after reading, and do some fancy math. I think using weight or volume would be easier and more accurate.


Sure you would need two readings (just as for weight or volume), as dilution is a diffential between two compositions. 
Didn’t think of the math (that’s what the software of your Mettler Toledo usually takes care of), but I think it is doable. But I am fully with you that weight or volume is far easier outside of a lab 😉

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How about a Japanese-inspired Martini, by one of my favorites, and easily a top 5 Bartender, Kenta Goto...

 

 
Quote

 

Starting Tuesday, February 8, the Hakumai Martini will be available at Nakaji. This Japanese-inspired "martini on the rocks" was created in collaboration with Kenta Goto of Bar Goto and features Japanese white rice vodka, Kijoshu, Hinoki bitters, and chef Kunihide Nakajima's special pickled sushi ginger. A portion of proceeds from each cocktail will be going to Heart of Dinner, a non-profit organization focused on assisting the elderly in the Asian community throughout NYC.
@heartofdinner @bargoto_nyc @bargoto_niban #nakajinyc

 

  • Like 1
  • Delicious 1

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, lindag said:

I am a big fan of dirty martinis however I don’t often drink them because if I have more than one I can easily get shitfaced.


A little Dorothy Parker for your reading/sipping pleasure:

 

”I can have only one martini;

”Two at the absolute most.

”Three and I’m under the table;

”Four and I’m under the host.”

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, weinoo said:

This Japanese-inspired "martini on the rocks" was created in collaboration with Kenta Goto of Bar Goto and features Japanese white rice vodka, Kijoshu, Hinoki bitters, and chef Kunihide Nakajima's special pickled sushi ginger.


That sounds pretty, pretty good* - I enjoy Kijoshu a lot and I love Hinoki bitters (and my bottle in the mancave could is always looking for more tasty application). Maybe they would consider a pop-up bar in Germany ?

 

—-

but as a purist: can you really call this Martini 😝 ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, weinoo said:

This Japanese-inspired "martini on the rocks" was created in collaboration with Kenta Goto of Bar Goto and features Japanese white rice vodka, Kijoshu, Hinoki bitters, and chef Kunihide Nakajima's special pickled sushi ginger.

 

I can't say I've got the rest of the ingredients on hand but the idea of using pickled sushi ginger as a garnish is very appealing. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Duvel said:

Chilling the drink rapidly is (if done properly) a simple heat transfer process. So mass x temperature of coolant vs. mass x temperature of alcoholic drink.

 

Why would you think that? How would this allow 0°C ice to chill a room temperature mixture to -7°C?

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

59 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

Why would you think that? How would this allow 0°C ice to chill a room temperature mixture to -7°C?


That‘s without the 0 oC ice limitation in bars. The latter is adressed in the sentence after your citation.

 

10 hours ago, Duvel said:

However, I understand that in a bar context with (as I have learned now) 0 oC ice and most likely the limited use of ice for cooling pure heat transfer may give way to a mixed heat transfer/phase transition process


And I think that because I used to work with this type of processes for a living (albeit not with drinkable substances).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, paulraphael said:

How would this allow 0°C ice to chill a room temperature mixture to -7°C?


If you want to do that, you have to add a lot of salt to the ice, and use it as cooling mantle, not an ingredient. 

Edited by Duvel (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

50 minutes ago, Duvel said:


If you want to do that, you have to add a lot of salt to the ice, and use it as cooling mantle, not an ingredient. 

 

Take a close look at Dave Arnold's research. He demonstrates that cocktails chill to below 0°C. And that essentially ALL the cooling power is from the melting. No need for salt; alcohol works through the exact same colligative properties. 

 

In his book he explains this in greater depth ... enthalpy vs. entropy—and why cocktail chilling depends on the same essential principles that guarantee the eventual death of the universe. 

Edited by paulraphael (log)

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

Take a close look at Dave Arnold's research. He demonstrates that cocktails chill to below 0°C. And that essentially ALL the cooling power is from the melting. No need for salt; alcohol works through the exact same colligative properties. 

 

In his book he explains this in greater depth ... enthalpy vs. entropy—and why cocktail chilling depends on the same essential principles that guarantee that the universe will one day die. 


I think you might not get me 😉

 

I do not contest his findings, and his conclusions are mostly apt. There is a fundamental difference how we see this issue: Dave (and you and most of this thread) has copious if experience in cocktails and the setup of a bar. And has understood and accepted these limitations as the parameters in which one works in. And that’s completely fine. „This is what we have, and this is what comes out of it“

 

I have no idea about the delicate ways of making cocktails. My angle is more of a goal-driven approach and what do I have to do get there. And what I have realized is that most of what I would do to for example chill a drink without dilution would not work or at least not used in a bar setup. „This is what the outcome has to be, and this is what is needed for that“.

 

The original question was how much dilution will a drink suffer (experience) if you cool it with ice. 25% dilution stands in the room. I couldn’t figure out where it comes from, but if I would have to I am quite confident to be able to control the amount of dilution from close to 0% to whatever. The solution for the former would be a significant excess of coolant (ice) over the drink and employing the coolant at the lowest available temperature. This is a simple technical solution, but it just doesn’t work in a bar setup. You have noticed that Dave starts from a shaker and whatever ice/water mixture goes in - there simply is no possibility of excess coolant. I would assume that is why the mass of the ice is not discussed, either. It is the outcome of what you have and he explaines the underlying thermodynamics (and does it well). So again: completely fine, just a set of limitations I did not understand before …
 


 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, paulraphael said:

And that essentially ALL the cooling power is from the melting.


Yeap. At 0 oC, and you pay for that by diluting your drink. If you don’t want that, please see above 😉

Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, Duvel said:


Yeap. At 0 oC, and you pay for that by diluting your drink. If you don’t want that, please see above 😉

 

Chilling is proportional to dilution, no matter how far you chill. Dave specifically demonstrates this. The amount of chilling due to conductivity, or the coldness of the ice, is negligible. 

 

Ice’s tremendous chilling power doesn’t come from the energy required to heat it up, but from the energy required to melt it. It takes 0.5 calories to heat a gram of ice from -1°C to 0°C (this value is called the specific heat of ice,) but almost 80 calories to melt that same gram (this value is called the heat of fusion of water). To put it another way, melting 1 gram of ice provides the same chilling power as bringing that same gram of ice from -160°C to 0°C.

Edited by paulraphael (log)

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

All chilling is proportional to dilution, no matter matter how far you chill. Dave specifically demonstrates this. The amount of chilling due to conductivity, or the coldness of the ice, is always minor. 

 

Ice’s tremendous chilling power doesn’t come from the energy required to heat it up, but from the energy required to melt it. It takes 0.5 calories to heat a gram of ice from -1°C to 0°C (this value is called the specific heat of ice,) but almost 80 calories to melt that same gram (this value is called the heat of fusion of water). To put it another way, melting 1 gram of ice provides the same chilling power as bringing that same gram of ice from -160°C to 0°C.


Please forget for a second the „melting ice“ mantra. That’s for a limited amount of 0 oC bar ice. Run your head through the Duveltini experiment, which happens all below 0 oC. A simple mass transfer limited equilibrium, no phase transitions. And I guarantee you with proper ice size and agitation it will be faster that what Dave observes …

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Duvel said:


Please forget for a second the „melting ice“ mantra. That’s for a limited amount of 0 oC bar ice. Run your head through the Duveltini experiment, which happens all below 0 oC. A simple mass transfer limited equilibrium, no phase transitions. And I guarantee you with proper ice size and agitation it will be faster that what Dave observes …

I am not scientist (though @Duvel appears to be!) - but this logic does equate.

 

Does ice that is perfectly round and clear make for a tastier drink (because that is what all the cool kids are doing these days!)

 

😛

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

True !

 

And don’t forget about those Japanese bartenders that spend 10 min chiseling the perfect round clear ice cube to put into your Hakushu 18. Best (and most expensive) drink drink I ever had 🙃

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

50 minutes ago, Duvel said:


Please forget for a second the „melting ice“ mantra. That’s for a limited amount of 0 oC bar ice. Run your head through the Duveltini experiment, which happens all below 0 oC. A simple mass transfer limited equilibrium, no phase transitions. And I guarantee you with proper ice size and agitation it will be faster that what Dave observes …

 

I don't see the Duveltini experiment. Is that link right?

 

Are you suggesting a flaw in Dave Arnold's methods or analysis? I'd be curious to hear what it is. I've gone over every one of those results and I don't see an exception to the "melting ice mantra" at any temperature. 

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

I don't see the Duveltini experiment. Is that link right?

 

Are you suggesting a flaw in Dave Arnold's methods or analysis? I'd be curious to hear what it is. I've gone over every one of those results and I don't see an exception to the "melting ice mantra" at any temperature. 


Link is correct, last paragraph.

 

It is not a flaw per se, I‘d rather call it a limitation of his parameters: he limits (actually not specifies) the mass of ice he is using. Again, because he doesn’t have to - his focus on the volume of a cocktail shaker is self limiting. He can’t simply introduce more cooling agent, thus he has to rely on the melting and the phase transition enthalpy.

 

I am very sorry, your statement „at any temperature“ is wrong. If your complete system (ice, shaker, drink) remains under the melting point of the ice, there is simply no cooling by melting ice. Put enough ice at low enough temperatures and you are there. It just might not fit into your shaker anymore and thus has no practical application in a bar setup.

 

 

Edited by Duvel (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 minutes ago, Duvel said:

It is not a flaw per se, I‘d rather call it a limitation of his parameters: he limits (actually not specifies) the mass of ice he is using.

 

He doesn't; he's demonstrates that the mass of ice is irrelevant, assuming there's enough of it.

 

The total surface area of the ice is relevant, but only to the speed of chilling. Not to the final temperature or dilution.

 

"You use “enough” ice.  We did initial experiments that showed that using too little ice results in poor chilling and greater dilution.  The benefit of adding more ice plateaus at a certain point so that it neither helps nor hurts the temperature or dilution.  I don’t have exact numbers for the plateau point (I lost my old data cause I’m a jerk), but using Kold-Draft ice, Eben and Alex shook a 100 ml gimlet with one cube, two cubes, three cubes, and up. They were able to keep getting better results up to at least 5 cubes."

 

 

I  now see the Duveltini experiment, but not sure I understand what you're saying.

 

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

48 minutes ago, Duvel said:

If your complete system (ice, shaker, drink) remains under the melting point of the ice, there is simply no cooling by melting ice. 

 

I'm not 100% sure I understand your point here. It's true that once the cocktail reaches its equilibrium point (around -5°C for the drinks of the strength used in DA's experiments there will be no more melting. And there will likewise be no more chilling. 

 

Are you talking about what happens when you put extra cold ice into a cocktail? The experiments address that. You get a very small additional amount of cooling from the colder ice. 1/2 calorie per degree for each gram of ice, vs. the 80 calories per gram you get from the ice melting. This ends up making a minute difference. 

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...