1. Start your martini right by using a mixing glass with very good quality ice. Big cubes work best. Making your own ice is really easy: boil water, then immediatately pour it into a Tupperware container and put it right into the freezer. Wait overnight and you'll get a nice big clear block of ice. Use a heavy wooden spoon to break it up and you'll get the perfect chunks to make a martini. The smaller the ice the more diluted the drink gets, so use two-inch chunks or slightly larger.
3. I like a dash of bitters, specifically orange bitters. There's a long history of using orange bitters in martinis.
4. Stir for 30 to 45 seconds. Every classic martini should be stirred.
5. Use a very cold martini glass or coupette. I always keep mine in the freezer. As you stir your martini, the temperature goes down to 32 degrees fahrenheit, and if you pour that very cold liquid into a room temperature glass, the martini just heats up the moment it touches that glass. It's like taking a perfectly cooked steak and putting it on a cold plate-it ruins the whole experience. Freezing the glass keeps the martini at the right temperature.
6. Strain the martini into your chilled glass and garnish with a lemon twist, which brings out aromatics.
7. Make sure you are sipping it with someone you like.
N.B. Always keep your vermouth and your vodka in the refrigerator, not the freezer. Freezing vodka is a technique used to cover up bad taste, just like heating sake is a technique used to hide imperfections. When you freeze a spirit, you lose out a lot of aromas that don't get released when it's frozen.More from TOWN&COUNTRY: