The 8 Crazy Nights Martini

photo by Robert Couse-Baker
photo by Robert Couse-Baker

You know what Christmas means to me? Donuts. Lots, and lots of donuts. Why? Because on Hanukkah (or Chanukah), Jews consume fried foods to commemorate the miracle of one tiny jug of oil that kept the Menorah (a type of holy candelabra) aflame for eight nights as they huddled in a temple which was under siege by Greek soldiers in ancient times.

While I’m sure your social media feeds are filled with holiday spice recipes, I’m going to present you with an Adam Sandler style cocktail: a concoction that, when consumed frequently, will last you through eight crazy nights (especially if they entail visits with extended family).

This variation of the Dirty Martini, an adaptation of a recipe by bartender Payman Bahmani, incorporates just the right amount of oil to keep your drink smooth without tasting like a deep fryer.

photo by Aliza Kellerman
photo by Aliza Kellerman

First, grab a potato vodka to represent latkes. Because they're fried in oil, latkes, or potato pancakes, are a Hanukkah staple. We recommend L.I.V. (Long Island Vodka). We’re going to infuse this vodka with shemen ziot, olive oil, to keep things really kosher.

  • 250 ml vodka
  • 2 oz (60ml) Extra Virgin Olive Oil

In a covered jar, combine the olive oil and vodka. At room temperature, allow the ingredients to mix and mingle for five hours. Freeze for an additional two hours. After you’ve removed your Hanukkah booze, get rid of the frozen fat that’s surfaced and and fine strain the rest through a coffee filter. Have your vodka prepped? Good. Now comes time for cocktailin’!

  • 2.25 oz (66.5ml) Olive Oil infused Vodka
  • .75 oz (22ml) Lustau Amontillado Sherry
  • Good pinch sea salt

Stir over ice and strain into a chilled coupe.

Funny how versatile a good Martini is. Holiday cocktails don’t have to be campy or rely on flair to keep in line with a theme. For best results, drink your Martini with a generous helping of latkes.


Original recipe found here.