Sunday, August 14, 2011

"I Think, I'll Call It A Vesper." - James Bond.

Tonight, I mastered the famed James Bond Vesper Martini after finding one of its prime ingredients, Lillet Blanc.
In Ian Fleming's 1953 novel, Casino Royale, James Bond invents and orders a Kina Lillet martini, which he named the "Vesper" after his love interest in the story. The now infamous drink appeared in both Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace" films.
At the Lillet Distillery you will see a quote prominently placed on the wall that says, “Casino Royale, Ian Fleming, 1953: "Dry martini in large champagne glass, three measures of Booths, one of vodka, one measure of Kina Lillet... shake ... then add zest of lemon.” Lillet Blanc (formerly Kina Lillet) is one of the prime ingredients in the Vesper Martini, an aperitif wine that was created in 1887 as a tonic for whatever ailed you. Lillet is still made at, La Maison Lillet, in the town of Podensac, South of Bordeaux, France, where the original distillery and cellars have been located since 1872.
The exact recipe for Lillet Blanc remains a secret. In all, the drink is 85% wine, and around 15% fruit liqueurs which include a base of sweet oranges from Valencia in Spain, green oranges from Morocco and Tunisia, bitter oranges from Haiti and cinchona bark (or quinine) from rainforests in the Peruvian The recipe is relatively straight forward.
"James Bond Vesper Martini for Two."
6 parts gin
2 parts vodka
1 part Lillet Blanc
Lemon Twist
And, of course, shaken, not stirred.
Damn fine!

Dialogue from movie, "Casino Royale"

James Bond: "I think, I'll call it a Vesper."
Vesper Lynd: "Because of the bitter aftertaste?"
James Bond: "No, because once you've tasted it, that's all you want to drink."