Saturday, August 18, 2012


I recently heard one of the theme songs from an old James Bond movie, and I had to think that for me, there is only one James Bond - Sean Connery.  I have seen some of the latter Bond movies, but it is just not right.  I mean, really, a blond Bond?

Before I add a couple Bond theme songs and a nice medley, I will touch briefly on Bond's martini - the full story can be found here, but this is a tidbit:

"Shaken, not stirred." The very phrase conjures up images of Sean Connery, natty in his tuxedo, about to break the bank at baccarat before bedding the beautiful double agent, doesn't it? James Bond has probably created more martini drinkers than all the gin joints in the world.

The reason the debonair Bond wants his martini shaken is that he is an iconoclast. He's not drinking a martini at all! He's drinking a vodka martini. There's a difference, as we shall see. Pay close attention--we will not use the terms interchangeably but it's easy to get confused.

Let's start by looking at Bond's drink. He takes vodka and gin in them. Ian Fleming gives a recipe for his Bond's preferred libation in the first Bond book, Casino Royale (1953), chapter 7:

"A dry martini," he said. "One. In a deep champagne goblet."

"Oui, monsieur."

"Just a moment. Three measures of Gordon's, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it's ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon-peel. Got it?"

He calls this a vesper, after the beautiful double agent from the book (n.b.: Kina Lillet is a brand of vermouth). In other appearances, Bond requests a "medium vodka dry martini," sometimes ordered shaken not stirred. From his vesper recipe, I take "medium vodka dry" to mean he wants a "medium" amount of vodka mixed in with his gin, but who knows? Thanks to John Cork of the Ian Fleming Foundation for digging up the vesper recipe and Bond's other (vodka) martini orders.

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