A sweet (but not cloying) precursor to the martini, this cocktail dates back to the 1880s. At Alfred's Steakhouse in San Francisco, the bar manager, Aaron Paul, scales up the booze and chills it ahead of time, so it's simpler to serve a crowd. For just 1 cocktail, use 2 oz. gin, 3/4 oz. vermouth, 1/4 oz. maraschino, and 2 dashes bitters.
20 ounces (2 1/2 cups) soft, aromatic, slightly sweet gin, such as Zephyr or Bluecoat
7 1/2 ounces bittersweet red vermouth (such as Punt e Mes) or sweet red vermouth
2 1/2 ounces Luxardo Maraschino liqueur
20 dashes Angostura bitters
10 large strips grapefruit or orange zest (use a vegetable peeler)
10 spritzes grapefruit essential oil* (optional)
How to Make It
Pour liquors into a pitcher. Fill with ice, add bitters, and stir rapidly until very cold, 30 to 40 times.
Strain cocktail into 10 coupe or martini glasses. Top each with grapefruit zest; spritz with grapefruit oil if you like.