Late Sunday evening I was at Osteria Firenze indulging in some insanely delicious lobster ravioli and out of this world Martini with my favorite mixologist Jacopo Falleni.
You know I can’t shoot straight alcohol but I am a sucker for a tasty cocktail and Jacopo’s Balsamic & Strawberry Martini is by far the best I have ever had. Period.
And since I always think of you when I come across such treasures I now have the recipe to share with you just in time for your holiday parties!
In his own words here is the story behind this absolutely out of this world martini:
Was a preatty slow Tuesday night ….and as always happen when the restaurant is not busy as I like it I was in paranoic !!!! The only cure for those kind of moment that a Firenze does’t happen often(TAHNK GOD) is for me to jump behind the cage !!!!
OK this time me and my bar manager that by then was P>B. we what to create something very unique so I stepin the kitchen and I start pooling out from the walk in stuff like when you open your logage after a mounth of vacation and you look for the wallet that you cannot find ………garlic, rosemary basil truffle tomato the wierdest things where flying out the refrigerator!
So I start smellig them while I was looking to the bottle shelfs to get the inspiration …….but nothing wasm coming to me !! Until I notice ……..becouse totally anal retentive thet the olive oil and the balsamic vinager dispenser wherent complitely full and clean as I want ……..before I was able to point the thing out to who was in charge ………the yellow bulb turn on in my brain!!!!!
BALSAMIC VINEGAR !!!!!! Wow this will be perfect !!!! ITALIAN RESTAURANT must have a drink with balsamic vinager what do you think?
Well I start grabbig fruit ………….STRAWBERRYS of course !!! The best marriage for Fruit and Balsamic is AStraberries so I start thinking to some gelato or dessert recipies with those two ingredient so she tells me lime!!!! And I think Panna cotta !!!!
so I start muddling the strawberries she trow a couple of lime and the balsamic and I go to grab the vanilla vodka ….but for mistake is the vanilla rum that my hand catch instead ……I look at it for a second and I start pooring …….well I smell it and I could tell that something special was happening ……..
Yes that was the first creation of the signature CAFÉ FIRENZE drink the balsamic martini was made.
BALSAMIC STRAWBERRY MARTINI
by Jacopo Falleni
- 1 ½ oz (6ct) Vanilla Rum
- ¾ oz (3ct) Simple Syrup
- ½ oz (2ct)Strawberry Puree
- 3 Small Strawberries
- 4 lime wedges
- 12-15 Dashes of Aged Balsamic Vinager
- Squash Fleur D’ Lis
- Balsamic Glaze
SIMPLE SYRUP : 1 cup of sugar 1 cup of hot water
Combine the sugar and the water in a pot at low heat until it starts boiling ,turn the fire off and start stirring!(this part is very important because, if you don’t stir, the result will be a foggy looking simple syrup instead of the nice and clear syrup !! As soon as it is ready, leave it out so it can cool down.
Find a nice bottle to store your syrup in for 20 days to a month!
Put a pound of Fresh strawberries in a blender, add strawberry syrup and as soon as the syrup covers half of the fruit, it is time to rock it!
Blend it for 30 seconds , you don’t want to blend it longer or the little seeds of the fruits will give your syrup a funny taste……well, you are almost ready to start …..just store your fantastic puree in the refrigerator for a max 2 days.
BALSAMIC GLAZE see Fabio Viviani 🙂
Take three strawberries, make sure they are nicely washed and the stem is removed. Place them in the mixing glass and add a lime wedge and the 3 ct of simple syrup, 10 dashes of Balsamic Vinegar, and 2 ct of the home made simple syrup and start muddling. The muddling process is done while you are pressing the lime so the unique flavor of the essential oil contained in the skin comes out ……be careful to not over do it because it will result in a bitter Minestrone !!!!!
Now we have a nice puree …….but where is the alcohol ???? Here it is! Rum !!!
Let`count until 6 and it is time to fill the shaker with ice(and when I say fill, I mean fill! The less ice you put in your shaker, the more watered down your drink will be….is fizics!!!)
Then, pour the mix with the mixing glass into the shaker and start shaking …… how should I shake it you say? ……I never did it before!!!
There are two rules to shaking, the shaker has to be used in a very elegant way and you have to shake with decision and for not more then 5 seconds …..your drink may not be perfect, but it definitely wont be watered down!!!!!
Burgundy color with amber rifless done from the balsamic glacedrizled in the glass, has a clear porfum of Vanilla and preatty strong acidity notes. We are talking about a great refreshing drink due to the presence of lime sugar and balsamic vinegar very well balanced together . A beautiful, clean as unusual aftertaste that live your mouth ready for the next sip!!!
1. Taking a Spaghetti squash (or any yellow melon) take a long segment from the skin giving us yet another melon canvas.
2. Using a paring knife, lightly carve a stencil on the skin surface, the shape of a fleur-de-lis.
3. Starting from the top of your stencil, cut out segments of the melon skin to start shaping your garnish from the top center point.
4. Make several wedge like cuts in the melon to remove the skin from the garnish, this will give you the most room to work with the rest of your canvas.
5. Finish out your fleur-de-lis by making small shaping cuts to the skin so you don’t accidentally take a major part out of our garnish.
The eye`s pleasure comes first, than the mouth’s pleasure!!!!
Lets start working …….take the Squash and make a slice from the bottom part, make sure not to make the slice too thick, it should be less than an inch deep.
Place the squash in a bucket full of ice water for five minutes, this will make the skin harder and easier to cut.
Starting from one end of the circle, put the two cuts symmetrically around the starting point of the design , follow one of the cuts down to give the shape of half a fleur de lis , repeat on the other side.
Take the martini glass out of the freezer and drizzle the Balsamic Glaze. Next, take the fleur de lis and hang it on the martini glass. Pour your drink…..!!
Do you feel like an Artist now????!!!