“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
I’m not sure that Emerson was referring to cocktails, but that would only be because he had never bellied up to the bar in the private club room at the Ocean House in Rhode Island. While on assignment for Greenwich Magazine, part of my job was to take Dean’s Mean Martini Class. I’m pretty sure I got an A. I mean, I put back like four different martinis and was still really really funny. I’m not a martini girl but the tales spun by the master storyteller and head bartender Dean Gardiner have made me a convert. He created this signature cocktail, the In The Weeds martini, and it placed in a statewide cocktail contest. So obsessed I am with this cocktail that I ordered Chartreuse (our local liquor store doesn’t carry it) and invested in a Boston shaker (Dean swears by them) and a set of martini glasses. When I mixed up a batch for a recent party at my house I instagrammed a photo and have been besieged by requests for the recipe, so here it is.
In The Weeds
By Ocean House Bartender Dean Gardiner
1 ½ ounces Nolets Gin
½ ounce green chartreuse
½ ounce tarragon tea
½ ounce lime juice
½ ounce lemon juice
Tarragon leaves, for garnish
Pour all ingredients into a shaker filled with ice.
Shake well and strain into a martini glass.
Garnish with tarragon leaves.
What the recipe doesn’t explain, that Dean taught us (while we were drinking) is how to make the tarragon “tea”. It’s actually simple syrup infused with tarragon. Here is a great recipe I found for simple syrup. It’s really just two parts sugar, one part water, boil it up. While the syrup is still warm you can infuse anything, in this case you add tarragon. Then keep your little concoction in the fridge until party time. When it says garnish with tarragon, it’s the tarragon from the syrup, not fresh tarragon. As for the lemon and lime juice, I squeezed mine by hand and was told that my martinis were a little pulpy. I clearly need to head back up to Ocean House for a refresher course.
If you give it a go, send me photo and let me know how your mad martinis turn out.
I was the guest of Ocean House for review purposes. I was forced to drink so many martinis because Mr. Luxury Travel Mom doesn’t drink and I had to make up for his lack of effort.