The original drink appears in Trader Vic’s Bartenders Guide from 1972 and is sometimes referred to as the Floridita Cocktail. The La Florida Cocktail is the creation of Constantine Ribailagualt and was one of the signature drinks of the La Florida bar in Havana, Cuba.
It’s name is strikingly similar to the Floridita Daiquiri but they are two different drinks. The daiquiri contains maraschino liqueur while the cocktail uses crème de cacao, sweet vermouth, and grenadine as the sweeteners. This particular version of the drink appears in the PDT cocktail book and is the creation of Jack McGarry.
La Florida Cocktail 2 oz Banks 5 Island Rum .75 oz Lime Juice .5 oz Crème de Cacao (Marie Brizard) .25 oz Sweet Vermouth (Cinzano) 1 barspoon Grenadine (Hibiscus Grenadine) Shake with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wheel and enjoy.
The drink is well put together and despite the .5 oz of Crème de Cacao the chocolate flavor is still subtle and interwoven with the herbal qualities of the vermouth. The final flavor is not one you would except but its delicious and well worth exploring.
7 Daiquiri’s in 7 Days continues tomorrow with the: Royal Daiquiri
The Martinez has been around since the late 1880’s and has gone through an array of variations. All of them contain the same 2 essential ingredients: Gin and Sweet Vermouth, albeit in different ratios. The origin of this cocktail still remains a mystery, with no one person being able to claim the drink as his or her original creation. Despite its origin being clouded, it’s clear that in some respects it gave birth to the iconic martini. It is a wonderful drink that deserves to be enjoyed.
Martinez 2 oz Sweet Vermouth (Cinzano) 1 oz Old Tom Gin (Ransom) 1 tsp Maraschino or Curaçao (Luxardo) 1 dash of Aromatic Bitters Stir all ingredients with ice Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
I like the vermouth heavy version of yesteryear. The modern drinks tend to put the gin forward instead of allowing it to play a supporting roll to the vermouth. In some modern versions the proportions are 2:1 in favor of the gin.
The drink is sweet and aromatic, with the botanicals of the gin coming through without overpowering the vermouth. The maraschino lends a light touch of added complexity to the drink that is just discernible in the background. If using curaçao it adds a subtle fruit note. This would be a great cocktail to introduce someone to gin.
For another version check out: Modern Martinez (Jamie Boudreau) 1.5 oz Sweet Vermouth 1.5 oz Old Tom Gin 2 barspoons of maraschino 2 dashes Fee’s Orange Bitters Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass