Published Dec 7, 2008

One of the finest drinks out there is the Martini. I’m not talking about the modern version, ordered by the sleek and hip in clubs and bars out there, which is nothing but a triple shot of very cold vodka; I’m talking about a proper Martini, with enough Vermouth to provide, you know, flavor. But sometimes that Martini’s just too harsh, and you want something a little fruity — not too sweet, just a little fruity. That’s the L’il Bit.

I just made the L’il Bit up one evening,1 principally to make something tasty for the AIG out of the spare remains of our well-used liquor cabinet. It worked great, so I named it after the AIG’s rapper name.2 Now I end up making it for her almost every weekend!

The L’il Bit is an easy cocktail to make and to sip. Mix with ice in a shaker:

  • 2 1/4 oz. Gin (I use Seagram’s for this, you could probably taste a fancy gin but stay away from those with more vegetal or floral taste profiles, like my otherwise-favorite Hendrick’s)
  • 1 oz. Dry Vermouth. Don’t fear the Vermouth! Use it with abandon even in your Martini.
  • 1/2 oz. Triple Sec. This liqueur, in any drink, will smooth out the flavor
  • 1/4 oz. Cointreau (just a drop!)
  • 3 dashes orange bitters (I’ve used Fee’s, which are sweeter than some others, and you’d like that sweetness here)

Pour into a chilled martini glass. If you’d like a garnish, try some frozen Gummi Bears, they’ll melt slowly and have a great flavor when you’re done. Enjoy!

1 There’s probably some other cocktail that matches the recipe here; in fact, what I’ve made resembles the Martinez — the progenitor of the Martini — and the Opal Cocktail. But I couldn’t trivially find a recipe online, so I’m calling it mine!

2 It’s not her rapper name in any particular way, just it got thrown out there and somehow stuck.