Dirty Martini (and make if filthy)

    If the simplicity bores you, you can trick out your martini in a number of ways. The most common is to add olive(s) and/or olive juice, making your martini “dirty.” Olive juice can be purchased. Julia Childs also liked to add capers and a bit of caper juice to hers. With a dash of bitters, one can add spice, and there is a myriad of recipes for the flavored varieties – but to my tastes, the simpler, the better.

     I was also aware of the ‘snob’ effect of the purists. In his article in the September Issue of Esquire magazine, Kevin Sintumuang noted, “If the martini is the tuxedo of cocktails, then the dirty is the tuxedo T-shirt of cocktails.” He also noted that dirty martinis are, in fact, awesome  and back to try to earn your respect.

      Dorothy, on the other hand, didn’t fall for all of this ‘serious drinker and purity crap.’ “I want mine dirty,” she’s been heard to announce. So, it was my challenge to make her the best dirty martini possible.

     I started out using the liquid from jars of olives. The problem was that we were using much more liquid than olives, and you can only find so many was to enjoy olive tapenade.

     Then we found a product called Dirty Sue. It tasted okay, but it discolored the drink and left a sludge in the bottom of the glass.

     And then a gift from the martini gods – a product simply called “Filthy.” It’s touted as being the world’s cleanest dirty add to a martini by being filtered five times. It doesn’t seem to affect the clarity or color of the drink. Cost-wise it clocks in at 40 cents a drink. Each pouch contains enough to make about 15 dirty martinis.

     Now when I ask Dorothy what she would like to drink, she will announce, “I’d like a dirty martini. As a matter of fact, make it Filthy.”

     Just when one thinks they are at the optimal level, a new idea comes along. We have created our own additive to accompany Filthy.


  • 12 olives
  • 6 teaspoons of olive juice
  • 2 teaspoons of capers
  • 2 teaspoons of caper juice
  • ¼ teaspoon pf granulated garlic


Toss the ingredients into a blender, and liquify.

Strain in a fine strainer and push the mass with a muddler to get all of the juice.

Add 5ml of the concoction and 5ml of Filthy, and enjoy.

It will color the drink a bit, but it is sooo worth it.

SOME GOOD NEWS!!! For Lovers Of The Dirty Martini.

     MYSELF? I know you didn’t ask, but I don’t want any other ingredients in my martini but gin and vermouth.

     If I’m making myself a martini ,I make sure all of the ingredients, glasses, and equipment have been chilled. I fill a beaker with ice, and I add 2 oz. of gin and 1 oz. of vermouth (making it slightly wet). I take a long-handled stirring spoon and I insert it between the ice and the walls of the shaker and stir a total of sixty 180-degree motions.

     I take a martini glass from the freezer and rub the rim of the glass and the stem with lemon rind. I strain the contents of the beaker into the glass and hold the lemon rind over the surface and give it a twist. I watch as the micro-drops of lemon fall to the surface of the drink.

     I pause to admire my work. And then I take that first sip. There’s nothing more refreshing.

     Dorothy is fond of dirty martinis. Her martini is prepared exactly the same except the brands of gin and vermouth are different – and she wants a bit of olive juice in hers along with one skewered olive.

     The olive juice has always been a problem. We’ve tried several but couldn’t find one she liked. Either the taste was off or there was sludge in the bottom giving the drink a cloudy look. We even would buy regular jars of olives and use the oil for the drink, but then we’d end up with several bottles of olives in the refrigerator, and I can only stand so much olive tapenade.

     And then, Voilà. We discovered a new product.

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