Vesper

2015-05-14

Ingredients

  • 1½ oz. Gin
  • ½ oz. Vodka
  • ½ oz. Cocchi Americano

  • Add all ingredients, with ice, to a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Created by James Bond in Ian Fleming’s 1953 novel Casino Royale, this cocktail consists of: “3 parts Gordon’s, 1 part Vodka, ½ part Kina Lillet, and a large thin slice of lemon peel.” 007 instructed it to be SHAKEN, of course, and served in a champagne goblet (which, today, we call a coupe glass). It is named (later in the novel) after Vesper Lynd – the novel’s lead female character. The Gordon’s gin we have here in the States (made in Canada) is 80 proof. Bond’s would have been 100 proof, so we use Bombay Sapphire or Broker’s which (at 94 proof) is closer to Bond’s Gordon’s. He also called for Kina Lillet (which is no longer in production). It was a bit sweeter and more bitter than today’s Lillet Blanc as it was infused with quinine – from the bark of the cinchona tree. Though there are occasional limited edition Lillet bottlings which utilize quinine, today we substitute Cocchi Americano – an Italian fortified aperitif flavored with cinchona bark, citrus rind, and spices, which more closely approximate Bond’s “Kina Lillet.” Similar to Bond’s martini, this is one serious cocktail. Enjoy!

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