What is vermouth?
Vermouth is fortified white wine that's been infused with herbs and spices.
The word vermouth is from the German word for wormwood (wermut), which was a main ingredient until somebody decided it was poisonous. Vermouth was first commercially produced in Turin, Italy in the 18th century and now most vermouth is produced in Italy and France. But people have been making fortified wines since the 5th century.
Vermouth ranges from dry to sweet. White dry vermouth is a popular apéritif and used to make a martini; sweet red vermouth is drunk on ice or mixed into cocktails like a Manhattan; white bianco vermouth is slightly sweet.
Vermouth is also used in cooking, primarily to add an herbal wine-flavored touch to sauces.