If you love the idea of an ice cold martini with extra pickled condiments, this French Pickle Martini may be your new favorite drink.
Not only is it garnished with snappy sour French cornichons but the Citadelle Cornichon gin is infused with them during distillation. And, not just any little pickles but the prized cornichons from Maison Marc in Burgundy.
The limited-edition gin is the brainchild of the prolific creator, owner and blender, Alexandre Gabriel. This is the first in a series of “Les Excentriques” that the brand will be introducing each year.
The purpose of “Les Excentriques” is to explore the creative possibilities of gin in small-batch limited editions. The eccentric, unexpected first-release pays tribute to the mighty French pickle, the Cornichon. The flavor notes are spot-on with “intense, herbaceous notes of juniper and aniseed, followed by the vinegar and salty dimensions of the pickles. A long and persistent final with a subtle touch of mustard and pearl onions.”
When I first tasted the cornichon gin, I thought of various recipes that could benefit from a touch of this pickle-y gin. I made a good cucumber salad and even better deviled eggs; I added it to a vinaigrette that I used on a chickpea and antipasto salad, but in the end, I decided that this was a gin best suited to a martini.
The vinegar, salt and pearl-onion notes inspired me try a version of the martini with an extra touch of grainy French mustard but I decided that it clouded the flavor and that Citadelle had already done all the difficult flavor work for us.
I did add a healthy dose of cornichon juice to dilute and dull the alcohol slightly, and to add a more prominent raw pickle flavor to the martini. If you are an olive and pickle lover and enjoy the brine as much as the pickled vegetable, you will love this drink.
I dubbed it the French Pickle Martini because it is French through and through, from the limited edition French gin to the extra cornichon juice and the cornichon and pickled onion garnish. If you want to gild the lily, add a few picholine olives as well!
French Pickle Martini
If you have ever had a Pickle Back and liked it, you will love this martini.
Makes 1 large martini
4 ounces Citadelle Cornichon Gin
1 tablespoon Cornichon pickle juice
2 cornichons and 1 pickled onion for garnish
1. Add ice to cocktail shaker.
2. Pour gin and pickle juice on top of ice. Place lid on shaker and shake vigorously.
3. Strain into a martini glass.
4. Place pickles and onion on a cocktail pic and place in glass for garnish.
5. Drink immediately.