Editor’s Cocktail Choice: The ‘Quontini


You know what’s great about being the editor of The Mequon News, as opposed to being the editor of The New York Times or The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel or even The Onion? It’s that I can have an epiphany, inspired by a tasty beverage and a raging fire in a backyard firepit, and I can tell you, my cherished readers, the Truth. It is truth unfiltered by a panel of corporate lawyers, unimpaired by a concern for being socially appropriate, unaffected by the need for a cheesy punch line – for the most part.

This is the Truth that I have discovered this evening: I have a recipe for the perfect Spring/Summer martini.

This is no small truth. Martinis, I think, have been devalued, much like the American economy. They have been over-sweetened and over-glamorized; tied to a Sex in the City mentality of posing and affected elegance. They have descended into a pink dimension, except for when they are skewed creamy and chocolate, and this is simply unacceptable.

I am not necessarily an old-school believer in swilling straight gin with an olive, although I do have some respect for that. I believe that the first sip of a martini should be tentative, and that like Sex Panther cologne, it could, perhaps, sting the nostrils.

But fear not, this recipe produces a very drinkable, delicious result, assuming you’re not averse to citrus. And frankly, this publication does not cater to the citrus-intolerant crowd.

So finally, here is the recipe:

Start with a good, smooth vodka. Wisconsin’s own Griffon Vault is surprisingly good. Belvedere is very nice. Stoli Select is excellent – maybe too good to mix with citrus. I know a lot of people around here order Grey Goose, many because of an old ad boasting a #1 ranking from 1998, but it’s really not that hot. Don’t use Smirnoff – another “festival winner” – it will not do the cocktail justice. If you’re using cheap vodka, just make a screwdriver.

The only other ingredient you’ll need is a jar of Del Monte Sunfresh White Grapefruit (you can get red, but it turns your martini pink) – available in the refrigerated section of your favorite grocer. This is not an advertisement. If you can find another brand that packs grapefruit in a jar with the same juice, that’s fine – it’s that syrupy liquid that is key. I know the label says it’s packed in “grapefruit juice made from concentrate,” but this juice is unique! Don’t try to use juice from concentrate or from a carton or even freshly squeezed. I’m sure you can make a fine Greyhound, but it is not a ‘Quontini!

Pour 3 ounces of vodka into a shaker with ice. Now add 2 ounces (or less) of the juice from the jar. Shake it up, pour it in a chilled martini glass and garnish with a couple of the grapefruit slices from the jar.

This is now the official martini of The Mequon News, and so it will remain through at least September of this year. Please feel free to post your comments at www.themequonnews.com, or on our Facebook or Twitter.