So far, we have looked at three methods for adding a minute amount of vermouth to your drinks, but what about having just the “right” amount of vermouth in your drink and ensuring that it is “balanced”? What better way to ensure this than to use the Martini Scales?
The Martini Scales were made by Loyal Gift Products Inc. of New York, N.Y. consist of two metal cups, one for gin and a smaller one for vermouth, that sit on each end of a see-saw arm, the pivot of which can then be moved up and down. The theory is that you pour vermouth into the small cup and then pour gin into the other until the scales balance. Moving the pivot adjusts the ratio at which the cups will balance; it’s all moments and turning points, but I’ll resist the urge to bore you with Physics.
The scales come with three ratios marked out on the arm: 5:1, 10:1 and 25:1 (Gin:Vermouth); here are the tasting notes for each of these. For my test, I used Sipsmith Gin & Noilly Prat Vermouth.
This was my personal favourite (I usually go for a 6:1 ratio, anyway): I found it to be smooth and rather well-balanced.
This still seems quite wet (with a strong taste of vermouth); I thought that this would differ more to #1, but it surprisingly similar and still quite good.
Very dry indeed; but then, at 25:1, that is what you would expect. Kudos to Nolly Prat, as the vermouth still comes through, but Sipsmith Gin can hold its own even if there was no vermouth. If you like your martinis dry, this is for you.
The Instructions for the Martini Scales