VERMOUTH A fortified wine that's traditionally made bitter with wormwood and aromatized with other spices and herbs, the best vermouth has historically been made in Europe. Generally speaking, vermouth comes in three styles: sweet or red, blanc or white, and dry. An important ingredient in many classic cocktails, it can also be served on its own, over ice.
SWEET (ROSSO) This style originated in Torino (Turin), Italy, in the late 1700s. Spicy and fruity, sweet vermouth is necessary to many cocktails, the most famous of which are the Manhattan and the Negroni. Often called sweet red vermouth or vermouth rosso, as the most popular ones have a deep red colour, or Italian vermouth, after the country where the style was popularised.
BLANC (BIANCO) Based in white wine, blanc vermouth originated in Chambery, France, and is also made with a touch of sugar, giving this floral aperitif a nice smooth texture.
DRY Originally from Marseilles, France, "dry" vermouth has minimal residual sugar, is based in white wine, and is just what you want to balance a Martini. A key ingredient of the Martini cocktail, these white vermouths are less commonly drunk neat, but can be a refreshing aperitif.