Torino, back in the eighteenth century, was doing rather well by its privileged class. Business was booming, and they had a vibrant cafe-culture.The old alchemical traditions of blending herbs, distilling, and sweetening wine were popular among some, but only when a local entrepreneur named Signor Carpano gave his grandmother’s recipe for medicinal wormwood infusion the clever brand name, Punt e Mes or “point & a half” in reference to the booming Stock Market, was the first Vermouth marketed.
About a hundred years later, during the period of the gold rush, some fortunate miner traveling between San Francisco and Martinez California ordered champagne to celebrate a lucky strike. The bartender gave the guy all the booze had, which was Gin and French Vermouth. Thus the Martini was born.
Despite the international appeal of Martinis, the true quality of its most subtle ingredient, Vermouth, remained widely overlooked by Americans. Then, no more than a couple of decades ago, California’s Andy Quady gave spiritual birth to a world class Vermouth.
Vya is a botanical infusion of distilled wine so subtle that it lifts the Vodka Martini into the pantheon of cocktails. Vodka…you say? Yes, because good quality Vodka won’t get in the way of Vya‘s two versions of Vermouths, one dry with delicate orange peel, ginger and chamomile nuances and the other sweet, with hints of tangerine, clove, vanilla, and a pleasant bitterness at the finish.