Thirsty Thursday

This Guinness Martini is the strongest martini you’ll ever drink

Aline Peres Martins | Staff Writer

Combine Guinness with espresso, rum, vodka and crème de cacao for strong, bitter cocktail that leaves you off on a nutty, warm note.

James Joyce probably rolled over in his grave as this cocktail was put together.

This is not the type of drink he would sip on while writing “Ulysses” and it is certainly not the type you would commonly find in the Temple Bar region of Dublin. It would be easier to find a traditional Irish folk band playing a cover of Beyoncé than it would be to find a Guinness Martini anywhere within 20 miles of the Storehouse — plenty of Guinness and tons of martinis, but nothing combining the two.

The martini is hailed as a traditional American cocktail. It is James Bond’s go-to, and is rumored to have originated either in Martinez, California; San Francisco; or New York in the early 1900s. The most interesting origin story, according to NPR, is that it originated when a miner walked into a California bar during the Gold Rush, asked for a drink to celebrate his new fortune, and the bartender invented the martini.

The amount of truth behind that story is certainly debatable, but what is not up for debate is its prevalence in the American bar scene. It is the first drink that comes to mind when thinking of the upper echelons of New York society, and an essential accessory to go with a black tie or fancy dress at a cocktail party.

Guinness, on the other hand, conjures up very different memories. It reminds me of long nights in a wood-paneled Irish pub singing old-timey songs. There is a certain hominess and warmth associated with Guinness.

So putting the two together is an interesting experiment.

This cocktail has the sophistication of a dry martini, the heartiness of a dark beer and the kick of a Long Island Iced Tea. It consists of rum, vodka, crème de cacao, espresso and Guinness, so just one cocktail is enough to take you out for a few hours.

Avoid drinking this cocktail too quickly because there is certainly an alcoholic taste. But because the combination somehow mimics the taste of dry, slightly bitter vermouth, sipping on the drink is actually quite pleasant. It is not a sweet cocktail at all. It doesn’t really taste like Guinness, either. It is a strong, bitter cocktail that leaves you off on a nutty, warm note.

This will not become my go-to cocktail. Yet, if I’m ever entertaining and want to make something unusual and intriguing that most people wouldn’t think to try, I might make a few of these. For the adventurous cocktail drinker, I think it is a worthwhile pursuit — if even just to try it once.

2 oz (2 shots) dark rum. Bacardi works just fine.
1 oz vodka
1 oz crème de cacao
1 oz cold espresso
3.5 oz of Guinness
Add to cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously. Strain into martini glass.


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