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Boston-area retail sources for Dolin vermouth?

A recent thread on pending changes to the formula for the U.S.A.-bound version of Noilly Prat http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/596078 got me to thinking: where can I buy Dolin vermouth around Boston? I've sampled it in a few cocktails over at Drink and quite like it: they have both the dry and blanc versions (and I imagine the rouge, too).

I'm also always on the lookout for Carpano Antica Formula, but know that's not distributed locally yet. Still looking for online sources that will ship to Boston.

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  1. MC, The only one I can think of trying is Martignetti's. If the don't have it, they may be able to get it for you.
    Good Luck,
    CocoDan

    1. Dolin is handled by Ideal

      Ideal Wine & Spirits Company
      P:781.395.3300

      You could probably call them and find out which retailers are carrying it.

      I've heard that Brix has it, but haven't confirmed that first hand.

      Cheers!

      1. The only way I know of to get Carpano Antica is to make a trip to NYC or have someone bring it back for you. It's the way Drink, Craigie, and Eastern have been getting theirs.

        We're also curious about Dolin. I know some bars around do have it but we have not spotted it in stores. Also from the same distributer, we're looking for Hayman's Old Tom gin. We'll have to make a trip out to Marty's in Newtonville soon (they're often the first to get these sort of things).

        3 Replies
        1. re: yarm

          Last I looked at Craigie, Tom was concocting an erstaz version of Antica (a really good simulacrum, I thought.) He did relate a story about bringing a case back from NYC on the Amtrak for ESK.

          Brix is in the neighborhood, so I'll check in there.

          1. re: MC Slim JB

            Tommy still has bottles of Antica. Or at least he had them at his vermouth class (where we also got to watch him make a batch of his replica) a few weeks ago. I know that Eastern did get some bottles when Kevin came back from his exchange program stint at Please Don't Tell.

          2. re: yarm

            Brix has Hayman's Old Tom too, I think at both the South End and Broad St. locations. Fixed my first homemade Old Tom cocktail with it a few nights ago: a Martinez with Hayman's and the Dolin sweet vermouth. Splendid.

            Come to think of it, my inaugural drink @ Drink was a Hayman's-based Collins. It really is worth picking up a bottle to try Old Tom in just about every canonical recipe you can put it in. Still waiting to make a Ramos with it; supposedly it elevates the drink to another level.

          3. Brix South End indeed carries both the Dolin Dry and Rouge (sweet). They're fantastic, and a relative bargain when sitting on the shelf next to Vya. Both are $15 per 750 ml, though I think there may be smaller format bottles (375ml) being rolled out too. The Dolin sweet has even (momentarily) dulled my desire to go to ridiculous lengths for a bottle of Carpano Antica. Same for the Dolin Dry and the reformulated N.P.

            However, Slim, you best post right here when you find out the cheapest way to get either of those to Boston. Who wants in on a case?

            1. Slim,

              I was recently shocked to find a pretty decent stock of Dolin Rouge at Marty's in Allston. It was $9 for 750 ml! It looks as though it may be an older bottling, perhaps some stock they had sitting around from some time when it used to be distributed in the US. Anyway, I also found some RinQuinQuin there, a peach-flavored quinquina (French quinine based aperitif).

              I purchased some Carpano Antico and some Dolin dry (current Haus Alpens-distributed bottling) on a trip to NYC over the weekend. I just love lugging bottles of booze in my luggage on the bus...

              2 Replies
              1. re: craigasaurus

                RinQuinQuin is definitely worth picking up! Two drinks we've made with it are a Peach Martinez [1] and a RinQuinQuin Martini [2]

                [1] http://frederic.livejournal.com/18682...
                [2] http://cocktailvirgin.blogspot.com/20...

                1. re: yarm

                  I know, I was surprised to find it in Boston. And it was $10! How could I pass it up? I've been tinkering, and came up with a pretty cool Negroni variation: build 3/4 oz. each dry gin, Cynar, Sweet Vermouth, and RinQuinQuin, a few shakes of orange bitters, stir, add ice and an orange twist.

              2. On a side note, I kind of dig the new/old Noilly

                1. Thanks for the tip, craigasaurus: Marty's in Allston indeed has the Dolin Rouge with its older-design label, now $10. Cool! A collecta's item.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                    Slim, do you know if there is any difference btw. the old and new label versions? I bought it for drinking, but haven't opened it yet... Should I hold on to it, and maybe try to find a bottle from the current crop to drink?

                    1. re: craigasaurus

                      Nothing I've read suggests a new formula, and it's worth noting that they have an appellation d’origine contrôlée to protect, so any reformulation would not be undertaken lightly. But I can't say for certain. My guess is that this is simply a new label design.

                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                        Ah,. thank you. I suppose I could buy one bottle to save, unopened, in case it becomes a collector's item in 50 years. Anyway, have you had any luck tracking down the Alpenz-distributed stuff? Some already mentioned Brix. I did buy the dry on a trip to NYC, but skipped on the blanc. I guess that's my next target...

                  2. Can you tell me about Dolin vermouth? I am curious. I'll have to try it.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Alica

                      Nice little summary here: http://www.europvin.com/index.php?pag...

                      In general, vermouth is a handy cocktail ingredient, a gentle way to add some of the herbal complexity of bitters plus some fortified-white-wine flavors. It figures prominently in many of the oldest cocktails from the 19th century, e.g., the Martinez, Martini (said to be derived from the Martinez), Manhattan, Bronx, and many others.

                      As with every ingredient in the current Golden-Age revival movement, bartenders are looking for more options, a broader palette, more artisanal products to work with. Dolin seems a perfect match for this: it's a very small producer with the unusual distinction of an appellation d’origine contrôlée. In addition to the expected dry and sweet styles, it also makes a blanc (what the Italians call bianco, a white vermouth that's sweeter than the dry style), as well as a fourth product, Chamberyzette, flavored with the juice of wild strawberries. It's sold at a very nice price ($10-15/bottle, versus upwards of $25-30 for similar small-producer artisanal vermouths like California's own Vya brand). And it has the added bonus of being very obscure, at least for now.

                      I always have 5 or 6 bottles of sweet, dry, and blanc/bianco vermouths on hand (VacuVin'd in my fridge, as vermouth is low-alcohol enough to spoil over time). I'm a dabbler with cocktails at home, and I like vermouth by itself (on ice with a twist) as an aperitif. So it's exciting to find a brand-new-to-me product on the market.

                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                        Many thanks for this interesting thread and excellent links. This will make a difference in my Negroni life.

                        1. re: whops

                          The Negroni, one of my favorite cocktails, is a perfect example of the kind of drink to which you can bring wonderful variation through the use of different vermouths without messing with its (sacred, in my book) original proportions.

                          The other variable is gin, of course. I just picked up a bottle of a gin I'd never seen before -- Greylock, a pot-stilled London Dry style from Berkshire Mountain Distillers in Great Barrington, MA -- which I can't wait to try. Probably should go to the Spirits board with this, but since it's a local product, has anyone ever tried it?

                    2. I was just over at Charles St Liquors and they must have just started carrying it, I forget the price but it was roughly $10.

                      1. None will ship Carpano Antica to Boston, but I am having some shipped to my brother in RI through liquorama. This is ridiculous, we are one of, I think, 5 states that restrict internet liquor sales.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: nsenada

                          Nothing to do with the Internet as such. I'm pretty sure that MA restricts the purchase of liquor from any out-of-state source, regardless of how it's purchased - Internet, mail order, catalog, whatever.

                          1. re: nsenada

                            Carpano Antica update - was at Drink last night, and apparently they got four cases (of ten total) that have been shipped into Massachusetts by a distributor (I think) called Atlantic.

                            1. re: nsenada

                              Atlantic = people who run Marty's

                              1. re: avial

                                Just called them to confirm, and I guess it wasn't them bringing it in. Perhaps I misheard. Oh, well.

                          2. FYI, Gordon's in Waltham is carrying the bianco and rouge... $14.99 for 750 ml.

                            1. The newly expanded Dave's Fresh Pasta now has all three varieties of Dolin vermouth.

                              -----
                              Dave's Fresh Pasta
                              81 Holland St, Somerville, MA 02144

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: dfan

                                Fresh shipment of 750mL bottles of all 3 arrived yesterday! And 1/2 bottles of the dry.

                                Thanks to Felisha's email of their arrival, I was able to get the sweet vermouth without running out of that style at home...

                              2. My SO and I were also introduced to Dolin vermouth through Drink (by way of a vermouth tasting flight--what a true bar of knowledge they have there!).

                                The only place I've run across Dolin (and I've been scouting out any Dolin Blanc carriers that I can, esp. since enjoying gin & vermouth combinations at Drink) was Ball Square Fine Wines and Liquors (~$14.99).

                                Also, I've been trying hard to have a closer store (in Brookline, where I do my grocery shopping) carry it, but just today I was notified that their distributor tells them that they must order 5 cases of product at a time to place such orders.

                                Ball Square it is for now then....

                                Enjoy.

                                -----
                                Ball Square Fine Wines
                                716 Broadway, Somerville, MA

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: ostrich

                                  When I told the owner of Ball Square Liquors that I was pleased that they had Dolin and that I didn't have to go elsewhere for it, he perked up and asked me what else I wanted. I put an order in for a bottle of Carpano Antica, so he might try to order a case. He also said that they were taking over the space next door (the chocolate shop) and they're adding a cheese kitchen, tasting area, and additional shelves.

                                2. Eastern Standard currently has a couple house made vermouths on their list, an ambre which is similar to Carpano Antica and a rose which is much fruitier and lighter, both delicious straight up.

                                  1. I saw Carpano Antica at Cirace's in the North End last week, priced comparably to out-of-state liquor stores where I have seen and purchased it. Of course, given how rarely I visit the North End, I'll probably just continue bringing it home from business trips to vermouth-richer locales. I believe (although I don't recollect as clearly) that Cirace's had the Dolin line as well. I don't shop there regularly, and can't speak to their prices or variations in their stocklist.

                                    1. For Carpano Antica, it's a bit of a haul from Boston, but Chris Gasbarro's Wine & Spirits in Swansea, MA stocks it for around $30. Closer than NYC at least!.

                                      Also, I've been a RinQuinQuin fan for some years now, and we enjoy it best on a hot day with a large slice of Orange and some Club Soda in a Highball or Mojito glass.

                                      1. I know this is a couple years old, but I just came across this thread when I was hunting for Carpano Antica around here. You may already know this, but Ball Square Fine Wines has an achingly good selection of spirits, including Carpano and Dolin. And unlike literally every other liquor store I've ever known, their inventory is searchable on their website.

                                        -----
                                        Ball Square Fine Wines
                                        716 Broadway, Somerville, MA

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: slaniel

                                          Thanks for the pointer to Ball Square Fine Wines website, slaniel! It's fantastic: I wish every retailer did this. I see they have an amaro I've been looking for on an off for a while (Zucca rhubarb amaro).

                                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                          -----
                                          Ball Square Fine Wines
                                          716 Broadway, Somerville, MA

                                          1. re: MC Slim JB

                                            Cambridge Wine & Spirits (the liquor store next to Whole Foods at Fresh Pond) has Zucca too; I picked some up a couple of days ago, being a nut for both amari and rhubarb. It's definitely in the Campari family of amari. I made a Negroni with it that was quite nice.

                                            -----
                                            Cambridge Wine & Spirits
                                            202 Alewife Brook Pkwy, Cambridge, MA 02138

                                        2. I was introduced to the Dolin vermouth rouge at Liquorland a few months ago. Wow. I am a Negroni drinker -- and the Dolin vermouth makes them more complex. And three or four weeks ago I picked up some more -- Liquorland had only half bottles this time. I bought the Dolin dry vermouth as well -- also in a half bottle -- but I haven't tried it yet.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: celestialmundane

                                            I bought Carpano for Negronis, and to drink on its own. Temple Bar, between Porter and Harvard, makes barrel-aged Negronis using Carpano, Greylock gin, and Campari, then ages them in barrels from the Tuthiltown Distillery. Delicious. And I confirmed tonight that they're delicious even without the barrel-aging. I think I'm going to try barrel-aging at home.

                                            I also got a recommendation to try Negronis with Cinzano Rosso, so that's in queue.

                                          2. We bought a bottle for my father's birthday at The Wine & Cheese Cask in Somerville three weeks ago.

                                            1. I believe Bin Ends in Braintree carries Dolin.

                                              7 Replies
                                              1. re: jjbourgeois

                                                Thanks! I originally posted this query over two years ago. Since then, Dolin has gotten a lot more widely distributed around Boston. I'm glad for it, as I think it's one of the better values among artisanal vermouths. I go through a lot of the Rouge, especially -- it adds nice depth to a Negroni.

                                                http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                  I don't go through as much as you, I'm guessing, and wondering if anyone has seen the small bottles anywhere besides Brix. (Hoping to get it slightly cheaper.)

                                                  For that matter, has anyone seen the small bottles of Noilly Prat recently? I went to my usual source (Cambridge Mall Spirits), but they no longer carry the small bottles.

                                                  1. re: Alcachofa

                                                    I got a small bottle of Noilly Prat at the Martignetti's on Soldier's Field Road recently. I'm having trouble remembering, but they may have had a half bottle of Dolin as well, but I think it was of only one variety, maybe the dry. Ball Square Fine Wines & Liquors also carries the half bottle of Dolin Dry according to their website.

                                                    I think you may run into the same problem on the Dolin though: the half bottle appears to be only $3 less than the $15 full bottle.

                                                    1. re: nickls

                                                      Rather than buy halfs, I use air-evacuation stoppers (like VacuVin) on my vermouths and keep them in the fridge. Pretty long shelf life that way.

                                                      http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                      1. re: nickls

                                                        Most Dolin splits I have seen have been $10 (the 750 at $15).

                                                        This includes: Dave's Fresh Pasta, Ball Square Liquors, Marty's in Newtonville, and elsewhere.

                                                        My recommendation is to start drinking vermouth as an aperitif (or aperitif cocktails that use a lot of vermouth) so your bottle never has a chance to get old. Dry vermouth really pairs well with fruit shrubs, for example.

                                                        1. re: nickls

                                                          Thanks, nickls. I just came back in here to say I just got back from Martignetti's and they did have them. 5.99 each.

                                                          They also had the Dolin white for 10.99.

                                                          Yarm, I on very rare occasion do drink a little white vermouth with a twist on the rocks, but just not often enough.

                                                        2. re: Alcachofa

                                                          I saw NP splits at Marty's in Newtonville a couple weeks ago.

                                                    2. Just an update, the sweet and rouge is at Bin End for $14.95

                                                      1. Rouge, Blanc and Dry are available at South End Formaggio - don't know the price though: http://tinyurl.com/648n5l6

                                                        -----
                                                        South End Formaggio
                                                        268 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                                        1. Wine Cask in Somerville carries Dolin vermouths.