The 12 Best Cocktails for Using Up That Bottle of Vermouth

Drinks so good you’ll be asking, Martini who?

Classic Martinez Cocktail

The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

If you're like most budding home bartenders, you probably have a sweet or dry vermouth (or both) among your bottles. And if you're anything like me, that vermouth bottle is collecting some dust.

When you're on a martini kick, you find yourself reaching for that bottle of dry vermouth (hopefully from the refrigerator, where it belongs!) only to use a mere drop or two if you like your 'tini dry. Finishing the bottle feels like a Sisyphean task. Thankfully, dry vermouth can do a lot more than martini.

And, the same is true of sweet vermouth—it goes a lot further than Manhattans (the same can't be said for some New Yorkers who refuse to visit other boroughs). In Spain, I always enjoy sweet vermouth over a little ice as an aperitif, or with an added splash of club soda (vermut con sifón) garnished with an orange slice and olive.

Vermouth is a magical aromatized fortified wine that offers a ton of flavors in a single pour, which is why it's so prevalent in so many cocktail recipes. I've gathered some favorites, moving from those recipes which use dry vermouth into those calling for sweet, so the next time either bottle is staring you down you'll have more than a few ways to put it to good use.

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    A Funyuns Gibson cocktail garnished with cocktail onions

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    If you like a martini and haven't sipped a Gibson, you are missing out. Think a dry vermouth-laced gin martini, but garnished with pickled onions instead of olives. And, if you enjoy a dirty martini, try dirtying your Gibson by adding a splash of the pickled onion juice.

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    Funyuns Gibson

    Funyun Gibson cocktail

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    It's a Gibson, but leveled up (or maybe down, given the snack-aisle vibes of a Funyun) with a quick-to-make Funyun infused gin. Just a handful of hours of resting time is all that's needed to yield your very own batch of salty Funyun gin. Use it to make rounds of Gibsons at your next party.

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    Chartreuse Martini

    Chartreuse Martini

    The Spruce Eats / Madhumita Sathishkumar

    If you're a fan of the herbal green liqueur, this spirit-forward riff on the typical gin martini is for you. (And this recipe might also serve the double purpose of helping you use more of that Green Chartreuse you have sitting around, too.)

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    Tequini (Tequila Martini)

    The Spruce Eats / Madhumita Sathishkumar

    A martini, sub tequila. Just like a traditional gin martini, you can play around with the proportion of dry vermouth to blanco tequila you use.

    Continue to 5 of 12 below.
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    50-50 Gin Martini

    Classic Gin Martini

    The Spruce Eats / Claire Cohen

    Try the martini the original way, made with equal parts dry vermouth and gin, along with a dash of orange bitters. It won't drink like the extra-dry martinis we have grown accustomed to, but it just might become a new way for you to enjoy this classic (and use up more vermouth than you ever anticipated). If you're feeling this 50-50 version, try making your martini "wet" by swapping the ratio so that there's more dry vermouth compared to the measure of gin.

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    Vermouth Cassis

    Vermouth Cassis

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    This lower-ABV option puts a refreshing spin on dry vermouth, combining it with the black currant liqueur and splash of club soda.

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    Classic Martinez Cocktail

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    This cocktail's ingredients list may read like someone was trying to make a martini and made a mistake, pulling a bottle of sweet vermouth in place of the dry found in martinis, but the Martinez actually pre-dates the martini. Gin and sweet vermouth are stirred over ice along with the tiniest pour of Luxardo maraschino liqueur and a dash of bitters, then strained and served in a chilled martini glass.

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    Gin & It

    Classic Gin & It Cocktail

    The Spruce Eats / Mateja Kobescak

    Meanwhile, the Gin & It reads like someone was making a Manhattan and grabbed the gin bottle instead. But that's not actually how it was created (or if it was, we will never know), and it's a delicious use of sweet vermouth in a straightforward drink.

    Continue to 9 of 12 below.
  • 09 of 12

    Blood and Sand

    Blood and Sand Cocktail

    The Spruce / Mateja Kobescak

    This equal parts cocktail features Scotch, along sweet vermouth, cherry brandy, and a bitter brightness from fresh orange juice.

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    The Boulevardier Cocktail

    The Spruce Eats / Karen Hibbard

    This bourbon based classic differs from a Manhattan with the addition of bitter Campari, making it a bit brighter than the usual sweet vermouth and rye whiskey drink.

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    Grand Manhattan

    The Grand Manhattan Cocktail in a cocktail glass

    The Spruce Eats / Maxwell Cozzi

    Sweet vermouth and whiskey get a citrus boost from orange liqueur and fresh OJ. This cocktail is so surprisingly refreshing for a whiskey based drink that it might be making its way to a brunch table near you, soon.

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    Americano cocktail recipe

    The Spruce Eats

    Sweet vermouth, bitter Campari, and club soda make for a refreshing and low-proof drink. While this cocktail recipe has precise measurements, it's very forgiving and you can pour and opt for different ratios of the sweet vermouth to bitter Campari depending on your taste.