If you’re a rabid boozehound (it’s okay to say you are — I identify as one as well), you probably have noticed something interesting about liquor cabinets and shelves: everything’s coming up botanical.
Modern Vermouth is made in tiny batches by a small group of producers. And the one thing Vermouth creators have in common is that they love — scratch that — they are crazy about organic, foraged ingredients. It’s these handpicked ingredients that give Vermouth its distinct, high-quality base.
There are all sorts of wonderful, modern Vermouth varieties out there, so we’ve rounded up a few for you to try.
1. If you’re looking for a drink that’s delicate, Jardesca is a lovely buy. This Vermouth features floral and mint aromas, a hint of apricot, and a bright, spicy finish.
2. Ransom Dry Vermouth is rich. It has hints of ripe fruit, citrus, and wormwood.
3. If you are a botanical fiend, you’ll love this — Atsby Armadillo Cake Reserve contains 32 botanicals. It’s also sweetened with dark caramel that’s made from muscovado sugar, and features cardamom, wild celery, and, get this — shiitake mushroom.
5. Foro Extra Dry Vermouth is produced from organic grapes (the Trebbiano variety). It includes the following botanicals: juniper, marjoram, coriander, ginger, cloves, chamomile, china bark, cardamom, angelica, vanilla, wild rose, angostura, gentian, and elderberry. Serious Eats describes its scent as spicy. It also features hints of honeysuckle.
6. While this is technically an old recipe (as old as 1891, to be exact), Cocchi Vermouth di Torino has a modern taste. Its base is made from the company’s Moscato. Wine Enthusiast describes its flavor profile as “rich and lush, with notes of dried fig and cocoa.”
So, don’t see a Vermouth that strikes your fancy? You could always try and make your own… Yeah, I just wrote that. This Organic Sweet Vermouth recipe comes from Rodale Organic Life.
2 750ml bottles of fruity organic red wine
2 750ml bottles of organic white wine
1 heaping tablespoon of wormwood
1 teaspoon orris root
1 teaspoon galangal root
1 teaspoon angelica root
1 heaping Tablespoon dried orange peel
2 heaping Tablespoons dried fruit (currants, raisins, cherries, apricots)
1/2 teaspoon fresh-grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon whole coriander, cracked
1/2 teaspoon lavender
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
1 stick cinnamon
1 star anise pod
1/2 teaspoon aniseed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon coffee beans, whole
6 to 8 ounces agave nectar
6 ounces brandy
Toast spices and roots, and boil one bottle of wine with aromatics for 10 minutes. Next, mix in the brandy, agave, and the rest of the wine and let the drink steep for one to two days. Shake or stir occasionally and strain solids. Keep the drink refrigerated and consume it within one month.
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Image of cocktail with Vermouth from Shutterstock