The drink was invented and named by fictional secret agent James Bond in the 1953 novel Casino Royale:
“A dry martini,” [Bond] 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?””Certainly, monsieur.” The barman seemed pleased with the idea.
“Gosh, that’s certainly a drink,” said Leiter.
Bond laughed. “When I’m…er…concentrating,” he explained, “I never have more than one drink before dinner. But I do like that one to be large and very strong and very cold and very well-made. I hate small portions of anything, particularly when they taste bad. This drink’s my own invention. I’m going to patent it when I can think of a good name.”
—Ian Fleming, Casino Royale
Later, Bond named the drink after his lady love Vesper Lynd. Maybe drinking a few of these numbed the pain of his broken heart; after all, it’s certainly a strong cocktail that will wash away memories and woes. Betrayal and tragedy aside, James Bond knows how to mix a damn fine drink. Would you expect anything less?
In the movie Casino Royale, when Vesper asks Bond if he named the drink after her “because of the bitter aftertaste”, 007 replies that he named it for her, “because once you have tasted it, you won’t drink anything else.”
Drink to good health? Not this time. Drink to the only woman James Bond ever loved — Vesper Lynd. Drink to love and fighting evil.
Sexual prowess and ass-kicking capabilities are not included in the mixing of this drink.
Another interesting fact – do you realize that Gordon’s the famous British brand of Gin, developed in 1769 and the recipe for Gordon’s is known to 12 people in the world and has been kept a secret for 200 years.