01 March 2010

Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry

I've been a fan of Manhattans for a while now, and in the last two years have even come around on Martinis and a range of other similar mixed drinks. But even as I've experimented with a wide range of whiskeys, vodkas and gins (home-infused and not), and gone so far as to make my own bitters (I'll get around to posting on that one fo these days...), the vermouth has remained the standard off-the-shelf variety. Mostly, because that's about all that's available.

But on a recent visit to 3Cups, I overheard Matt S. extolling the virtues of their (recently-added) AOC Vermouth, Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry. Intrigued, I interrogated further and learned that the staff had done a taste test with the Vermouth, on ice, by itself – and that it'd passed with flying colors. Say no more! I picked up a bottle of the Dry and of the Blanc (sweet and white – never even heard of such a beast before) – they were out of the Rouge – and prepared to give them a test-run that evening when B. and S. came over for dinner.

First, tasting straight-up, chilled.

Round 1: Taste Test

Dry: incredibly delicate and tasty, herbal with a nice bitter finish but not parched. Really does make a great apertif.

Sweet: fuller palette,  still nice herbal flavors but pops a little more without being saccharine in the way your normally think of sweet vermouth.

Round 2: Cocktails

Lately, Perfect Manhattans have been my cocktail of choice and this seemed like a perfect (ha!) opportunity to really put these vermouths through their paces.

Perfect Manhattan a la Carrboro


2 oz. Pendleton Blended Canadian Whisky
1/4 oz. Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry Dry
1/4 oz. Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry Blanc
Dash herbal-citrus bitters
Dash Fee Brothers Whiskey Barrel Aged Bitters


Add to shaker over ice; shake vigorously and strain into glass


Maybe the best Manhattan I've ever had: balanced, delicate, flavorful with herbal, caramel, vanilla tones all melding together in an absurdly smooth drink. Obviously I can't speak highly enough of the Dolin – totally converted, and can't wait to pick up a bottle of the Rouge.


Unknown said...

I'm glad the liked the vermouth. The Rouge is apparently on the way. I'm intrigued by the homemade bitters comment. Maybe a tutorial is in order. I'll bring the vermouth?

-Matt S.

jkd said...

Sounds good!
And recipe will be forthcoming one of these days...

Kimberly Harris said...

JKD, you said...

"But even as I've experimented with a wide range of whiskeys, vodkas and gins , and gone so far as to make my own bitters, the vermouth has remained the standard off-the-shelf variety."

Enjoying excellent cocktail such as this one is truly quite dramatic. Compare to just an ordinary glass of wine, this Dolin Vermouths has a very remarkable taste because each small sip carries so much interest that you tend to drink it more slowly to make it last.

Kimberly Harris
Atlanta, GA
Webmaster of ImagineConsultation
(SEO Company)