Within craft cocktail culture, ginger is still a popular go-to ingredient for many cocktails. Bartenders find that the brightness and astringency of ginger pairs well with most citrus, making it a logical choice. With that choice in mind, we are going to talk about where to find a simple and approachable — and not to forget delicious — ginger martini.
The best one I’ve had so far you can find at the ever-controversial Wang’s in Lakeview East. Wang’s is the sister bar to Wakamono, the swanky sushi joint on Broadway. With no sign or branding outside of the bar, the small but dark and intimate ambience of the cocktail den has been compared to a speakeasy.
Their cocktail list is always impressive, but the ginger martini is what really shines. Muddling fresh ginger in the bottom with a touch of lemon juice and a vodka base lends prominence to the ginger taste. It’s deceptively simple, yet still gives off an air of complexity. Furthermore, it’s vodka based for those beginners looking to push their craft cocktail limits before taking on something else from the menu like a Smoky Rob Roy or a Mint Lavender Julep.
If you can’t make it to Wang’s this weekend, create your own ginger martini a home with a few simple ingredients, including fresh ginger, which you can get in the produce aisle at your grocery store.
The Animated Bartender’s Ginger Martini
3 ounces vodka
1 tablespoons fresh peeled ginger
1/4 ounces. Domaine de Canton
1/4 ounces. simple syrup
1/4 ounces. lemon juice
1/2 ounces Brut Prosecco (optional)
In a martini shaker, muddle fresh ginger, add vodka, ginger liqueur, simple and lemon. Add ice, shake until frosty, double strain using a hawthorne & tea strainer into a martini or cocktail glass. Top with brut prosecco for some sparkle (optional). Garnish with a fresh piece of ginger and savor!
Other places you can find a ginger martini on the North side of Chicago:
The Pump Room (Gold Coast)
Uncommon Ground (Wrigleyville)
Mizu Yakitori (Old Town)
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Tyler Lymer is a blogger by day, mixologist by trade. The author of The Animated Bartender, Tyler is a Certified Specialist of Sprits, canuck and artist. Watch for his specialty cocktails several times per month on My Daily Find Chicago.