Bottle Resting& Batching– (e.g. Dartmoor Martini)
Two similar processes that have many different benefits especially when it comes to service and consistency. Great when you are having friends around for cocktails and you don’t want to be stuck making drinks all night, because with Bottle Resting or Batching, all the work is done before the party starts!
Many drinks will also improve by being rested in bottle, and in other occasions it allows us to use ingredients and techniques that would not be possible to use with more traditional drinks making techniques.
Cocktails made without fresh ingredients (such as Martinis, Negronis etc…) can be bottled and left for long periods of time to round and mellow. Think slow cooked food and how much better the flavors are integrated and developed when left to rest.
The most convenient way to make a bottle rested cocktail is to add the required water content to the bottle too before chilling. So, for example, a dry Fifty-Fifty Martini consists of –
2.5 parts — Plymouth Gin
2.5 parts — Dry Vermouth
1 part — Water
This method replaces the need to Stir the ingredients with ice to add the required amount of water through ice melt.
More complex Martinis (eg Dartmoor Martini) particularly suit this technique, as it allows powerful flavours to integrate with each other, creating a more unified and balanced finished cocktail.
If there are fresh ingredients in the recipe, then you have to consider that fresh ingredients, and the drink’s quality will peak within just a few days. If there are sparkling ingredients such as ginger ale, soda or tonic, the fizz will be lost unless an airtight container is used, and unless you plan to serve in a large format, these drinks are best bottled individually so that the fizz isn’t lost when the bottle is repeatedly open and closed.
Bitters are a bit of a mystery. The impact the flavor of bitters has will not be in direct proportion to a single serve recipe. So, if you wish to add bitters during the batching process, go light and go by taste not by scaling up a recipe. I recommend leaving bitters out and adding them at the point of service, like you add a garnish.
Finally, if your recipe is usually shaken, you will need to account for the water this process adds, or simply batch the ingredients without water and shake with ice at the point of service. Don’t forget that shaking also aerates your drink and changes the texture too. So, I would advise shaking at point of service.