5 Classic Vermouths From The Iconic Martini Brand


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Ever since Alessandro Martini and Luigi Rossi created their unique vermouth in 1863, the words Martini and vermouth would go hand-in-hand. The best Martini vermouths infuse fortified wines with aromatic botanicals such as fruits, spices, herbs, and bark.

The original Martini Rosso has been enjoyed for over 150 years, with the exact ingredients remaining a secret that is only passed on from master blender to master blender.

The Martini brand has since launched five truly unique and popular Vermouths and has stayed true to its heritage. It is still located in the small village of Pessione, Italy, where the first bottle of Martini Rosso was blended.

Best Martini Vermouths

The best Martini vermouths can be enjoyed neat, with tonic, or in a flavoursome cocktail. Here are 5 Martini vermouths for any occasion, with my top pick at the end.

1. Martini Rosso

Martini Rosso
Credit: Martini

Overview

  • Distiller: Martini and Rossi
  • ABV: 15% (30 Proof)
  • Country: Italy
  • Colour: Cherry Red

Review

Martini Rosso was the first vermouth that the distillery produced and is made from a recipe created in 1863. This Vermouth recipe uses many aromatic and Italian herbs to create its distinctive flavour.

A few known botanicals used for Martini Rosso are sage, savory, dittany, bitter woods, and other secret botanicals. These botanicals are macerated with fortified wine to release their intense flavours.

On The Nose

A fruity aroma with bitter wood and green herbs.

On The Palate

A complex and bittersweet combination of fruits, with bustling hints of sage, savory, and anise. Mid-palate becomes fruitier, leading to a slightly bitter finish. Lovely.

Best Served

Martini Rosso Vermouth is best served over ice with a tonic water mixer (50/50 mix of vermouth and tonic) and can be used in a Manhattan cocktail. One benefit of this vermouth is that it can spice up your sangria!

Pair With

Andrew and I find that Martini Rosso is ideal for pairing with cured meats, cheeses, nuts, and olives, plus my all-time secret fave; pork crackling.

Pricing & Info

You can check the latest pricing, product information, and order online.

2. Martini Extra Dry

Martini Extra Dry
Credit: Martini

Overview

  • Distiller: Martini and Rossi
  • ABV: 15% (30 Proof)
  • Country: Italy
  • Colour: Pale Gold

Review

The Martini Extra Dry recipe was developed over ten years, from 1890 till its launch on New Year’s Day 1900. This new ‘Extra Dry’Dry’ vermouth uses far less sugar, and many brought in the new millennium with a glass in hand.

Macerated botanicals with new aromatic barks, woods and orris roots are added to the base wine, which is then filtered and fortified. This process introduces locally grown citrus fruits for an added zesty-styled Vermouth. 

On The Nose

A fruity-floral bouquet of violets, sweet orange, apple, and bitter herbs.

On The Palate

Semi-dry opening of citruses and apple with complex herbs mid-palate. The finish is dry yet well-balanced, with plenty of crisp fruit and spice. If you find this vermouth too dry, check out my article, 8 Sweet Vermouth Brands.

Best Served

Martini Extra Dry Vermouth can be enjoyed with ice and soda water with an apple swirl. For a refreshing cocktail, try a Gin Martini.

Pair With

I enjoy Martini Extra Dry with rich fish such as sardines or bitter veggie nibbles like olives and capers.

Pricing & Info

You can check the latest pricing, product information, and order online.

3. Martini Bianco

Martini Bianco
Credit: Martini

Overview

  • Distiller: Martini and Ross
  • ABV: 15% (30 Proof)
  • Country: Italy
  • Colour: Clear with a Pale Gold hue

Review

Martini Bianco was inspired by the beautiful white flowers of the vanilla plant. This vermouth was given the nickname ‘Bianchissimo’ by its creators, which translates to ‘The Whitest’, to pay homage to its main flavouring ingredient.

Vanilla and local herbs are infused into a Trebbiano base wine (the same grape as Vecchia Romagna Etichetta Brandy) and fortified with a grape spirit for a unique and delicate take on vermouth that I find easy to drink.

On The Nose

Light citrus, sweet orchard fruits and slightly bitter herbal essences hover in the background. 

On The Palate

I love the gentle spice, floral, and fruit notes on the opening with cinnamon-coated vanilla mid-palate. The finish is semi-sweet but with a mild kick of bitter warmth of spice.

Best Served

Sometimes keeping it simple is best; Enjoy Martini Bianco Vermouth with tonic water and a slice of fresh-cut lime.

Pair With

The classic Martini Bianco works well with grilled vegetables, cured meats and spicy dishes.

Pricing & Info

You can check the latest pricing, product information, and order online.

4. Martini Rosato

Martini Rosato
Credit: Martini

Overview

  • Distiller: Martini and Ross
  • ABV: 15% (30 Proof)
  • Country: Italy
  • Colour: Grapefruit Pink

Review

Martini Rosato is a pink vermouth inspired by classic recipes discovered in Luigi Rossi’s personal journal and brought to life by Martini’s Master Blender and Herbalist.

White and red base wines are blended together to create Martini Rosato. Botanicals including Madagascan cloves, Sri-Lankan cinnamon, nutmeg, and citruses are added to the base wine that’s then fortified to create a light aromatic and gently spiced vermouth.

On The Nose

Aromas of spice, clove, cinnamon, anise, and delicate floral notes.

On The Palate

Bitter citrus and sweet berries on the opening with spicy clove, nutmeg, and a welcome touch of cinnamon. A refreshingly crisp finish, but one drawback is that it does not have the bittersweet kick of others in the range.

Best Served

I find that Martini Rosato Vermouth can be enjoyed straight up with ice and an orange slice. You can add tonic or soda as a mixer and mint for a refreshing tall summer drink.

Pair With

You can pair Martini Rosato with seafood such as shellfish, crab or lobster.

Pricing & Info

You can check the latest pricing, product information, and order online.

5. Martini Fiero

Martini Fiero
Credit: Martini

Overview

  • Distiller: Martini and Rossi
  • ABV: 15% (30 Proof)
  • Country: Italy
  • Colour: Strawberry Red

Review

When first launched in the late 1980s, this bittersweet orange vermouth did not appeal to the cocktail community who craved sweeter drinks. Now tweaked and reintroduced, this bittersweet orange vermouth is becoming incredibly popular.

Martini Fiero Vermouth is made with a blend of white and natural botanicals. The introduction of citrus, bitter orange and wormwood (think absinthe) are infused to create zesty citrus and bitter-herb flavours.

On The Nose

Grapefruit zest, blood orange with a very subtle bitterness of wormwood.

On the Palate

Initially, candied orange is balanced by hints of sharper grapefruit, and Mid-palate reveals bitter wormwood, clove and anise. The finish is crisp and fresh.

Best Served

Martini Fiero is a vermouth that can be enjoyed with tonic and a slice of grapefruit or in a Surf spritzer.

Pair With

Like many vermouths, Martini Fiero pairs well with olives, cured meats, and salty cheeses.

Pricing & Info

You can check the latest pricing, product information, and order online.

Seperator

Ingrid’s Top Pick

best Martini vermouth

Martini Rosso

Martini Rosso is my top pick Martini vermouth, because it is incredibly versatile and has just the right balance of bitter wood and sweet fruit.

I prefer to drink it neat with ice as an aperitif, but you can enjoy it in cocktails and use it to pep up a dull Sangria.

Vermouth Q&A

Ingrid with Martini Rosso, neat with ice & an orange wedge
Ingrid with Martini Rosso, neat with ice & an orange wedge

What Is Vermouth?

Vermouth is a fortified and aromatised wine infused with natural botanicals such as fruit, roots, herbs, flowers, spices and bark.

How Is Vermouth Made?

Vermouth combines a base wine aromatised with natural botanicals such as herbs, spices, fruit, and flowers for added flavour. A grape spirit or brandy is added to the wine to fortify it and increase the ABV.

Did The Martini Brand Invent Vermouth?

The Martini brand did not invent vermouth but merely created its own version. The origins of aromatised wine date back to the ancient Greeks in 400BC when they drank them for medicinal purposes. 

The modern version of vermouth today dates back to 1786 when Antonio and Benedetto Carpano created and bottled their own vermouth and introduced it to the world. 

Conclusion

Martini Extra Dry works well in a Gin Martini cocktail.
Martini Extra Dry works well in a Gin Martini cocktail.

Since the 1863 launch of Martini Rosso, the Martini brand has since launched five truly unique vermouths and a range of sparkling wines that have become a firm favourite at most celebrations. I personally enjoy it as an afternoon holiday alfresco drink or a pre-dinner aperitif.

Martini makes the most popular vermouths on the planet. The original Rosso, the less sweet extra dry, Bianco the ‘Bianchissimo’, the spicier Rosato, and the citrusy bittersweet Fiero are all expertly infused vermouths.

Further Reading

Below are some additional articles from The Drinks Geek blog. We write articles on several fascinating areas of drinks, including different brands, drink types, cocktail recipes and more.

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