Summer is coming, and on countless terraces one can enjoy the sun with an aperitif. Who can resist the freshness and the taste of a Vermouth?
Very few people know that this is one of the oldest alcoholic beverages, originated at almost the same time as the wine. Below we show you its origin and how to make it.
Origin of Vermouth
We find the first evidence in Egypt, Greece and Rome, where the mixture of spices and wine has been used for medical purposes. Its invention is attributed to Hippocrates, born in 460 BC, and its formula was applied in the Middle Ages under the name of “hippocratic wine”.
In other countries, such as in Germany, existed a similar drink named Wermut, made of wine and absinthe, and from which the name Vermouth has arisen, under which this drink nowadays is known.
The modern Vermouth was originated in the XVIII century, invented by Antonio Benedetto Carpano, who introduces the first sweet Vermouth in Turin (Italy), and makes this drink very popular. In the XIX century, this drink becomes more important, and it is used for the famous cocktails like the Martini or Manhattan.
Preparation of Vermouth
The base of every Vermouth is wine, with a share of about 80%. Mostly it is macerated in a barrel or container, and mixed with a large number of herbs and plant extracts.
One of the herbs that is traditionally associated with the creation of Vermouth is absinthe, but also very common fennel, lavender, rosemary, clove, cinnamon, chamomile, vanilla, rhubarb, coriander, star anise and a long list of herbs, roots, spices, fruits and flowers is used.
A Vermouth can contain between 30 and 50 herbal combinations, with which the respective brands gain their characteristic flavor. The red vermouth regain their color by adding from caramel derived dyes.
The maceration can take weeks or months, until all the compounds are diluted. The final product has an alcohol content of between 15 and 22 percent.