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Martini Chemistry

  1. Apr 23, 2005 #1
    Is there any validity to the long debated topic of bruising alcohol, specifically gin in an ice filled martini shaker? Can gin or any other alcohol react and change it's chemical make up by this shaking? Can air introduced by the shaking react with the alcohol and affect the flavor by reacting with the aldehydes? Is there really a chemical reaction or is it simply a colloidal suspension of air and tiny ice particles?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 23, 2005 #2


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    As far as I remember, the basic difference between shaken and stir maritini is the chilled and dilution factor. Shaken method cools the martini faster and does not dilute (due to melting ice) the martini as much as a stir martini.

    This will ultimitely affect the interaction of taste bud and the molecules. It is the same principle with red and white wine. Temperature will change the taste of wine.
  4. Apr 23, 2005 #3
    Thank you for the insight but can you address any possible chemical reaction between the liquor, ice, and air with the kinetic energy and agitation of the shaking? I don't believe there is one however the topic is still hotly debated.
  5. Apr 23, 2005 #4
    On the same topic, does ice that is colder than 0 degrees celsius interact any differently with ethanol than ice at 0 degrees celsius?
  6. Apr 23, 2005 #5


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    I'm pretty sure that a liquid solution of aqueous ethanol, when frozen sufficiently will simply yield ice and liquid ethanol; although this freezing point will be lower than 0 degrees (freezing point depression).

    I don't believe that any of your queries pertain to chemical reactions (not any that I've heard of), air, alcohol, and water do not react significantly especially at lower temperatures...although there may be a slight pH dynamic.

    Overall, iansmith hit the spot. Shaking expedites the cooling, the details are not so important...you're simply speeding up the energy distribution process. Heat (assuming a closed container) transfer is in the direction of lower temperature medium to the higher. The greater the distinction in temperatures, the faster the heat transfer. A temperature gradient as such that would exist if the martini/ice were left alone, will have a lower rate of heat transfer, enough so that the room temperature itself would have had quite a role in melting the ice.
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