There is a culture around vermouth in Spain. It is not only the drink, it is the ritual associated with it.
After years of being in decadence, as new generations considered vermouth as an old fashion drink, more appropriate for their grandparents than for young, people, vermouth is now having a revival and I am very pleased!
So, welcome back vermouth!
Although you can find white vermouth in Spain, which we really like is the red one. The classic recipe is red vermouth, a bit of soda, orange zest, ice and a few drops of angostura. I love the classic version! My tip for a perfect vermouth, some green olives soaking in the drink. It´s my favourite bite. I let them soak until the drink is finish so they absorb all the aromas and flavours from the vermouth. ¡Está rico, rico! I mean… “It´s delicious!”
Vermouth was the drink to have with some nibbles before lunch, mainly on Sundays. It was called “la hora del vermouth”, -the vermouth time-. As the time went by, the vermouth was substituted for wine or beer. Although the beverage was replaced for other drinks, we never got out of the habit of “la hora del vermouth”, which took the meaning of going out to have a drink and some tapas.
In the last years, the vermouth has experimented a revival in Spain. Young people are asking for this drink again when they go out for tapas. Even there are special events with “vermouth crawls” in some cities on Sundays and some pubs are now getting specialized in vermouth (the trendy word for this kind of pubs now is “vermutería”). This places offer now a wide variety of vermouths but also, vermouth cocktails.
Vermouth goes very well with olives, pickles and cured meats or cheese; right, the classic tapas. But as the range of vermouth drinks is increasing, the same with the food and you can pair the beverage with other tapas too.
So yes, that is what we do in Spain on Sundays before lunch. And it is what we are doing in Cambridge the first Sunday of each month at Cambridge Wine Merchants Cherry Hinton Rd, “la hora del vermouth”, with authentic tapas and any drink you want to pair with.
Join us and spend a Sunday morning like in Spain!