Bars finally waking up to vermouth

Bars have finally begun treating vermouth properly, according to cocktail historian and Sipsmith master distiller Jared Brown, who applauds the trend.

On a recent visit to Sydney, Brown (pictured above) said he had long been campaigning for bars to rethink the category.

“At some point in every presentation I do on any subject, I will launch into a tirade about vermouth. I will mention that vermouth is a wine – it breathes, it rots, it dies,” he said.

“It should not be on a back bar with a pour spout in it. That is why people didn’t like vermouth in martinis.”

Brown co-authored The Mixellany Guide to Vermouth and Other Aperitifs, which was first published in 2011 and he revealed it is now likely to be updated.

He welcomed the recent explosion of the vermouth category, though he cautioned that many of the products on the market need to be used judiciously.

“Young vermouths are very brash,” he said. “When I’m mixing with them I have to omit the bitters. You can’t put Angostura in a Manhattan if you’re working with some of these vermouths, it kills it.”

Asked to name his favourite vermouth for a martini, Brown nominated the Cocchi Vermouth di Torino.

For a dry martini, he said he would he said he would cut the Vermouth di Torino by half with Martini Rosso, “which I also think is an outstanding product”.

Brown was talking to James Atkinson at The Barber Shop.

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