Espresso Martini Recipe

How to make a martini

Try our fun twists on the classic cocktail, from gingerbread and espresso to elderflower and lemon

What is a martini?

Essentially, the martini is a mix of London dry gin or vodka and French dry vermouth, stirred over ice, strained and poured into an ice-cold cocktail glass. Lemon zest or a good-quality green olive is the usual garnish.

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Who invented the martini?

The martini’s invention is not attributed to any one person. Although one widely regarded idea is that the martini evolved from a martinez cocktail that was popular in the late 19th century, which used a sweetened-style gin as its base. This was included in The Bartender’s Guide by ‘Professor’ Jerry Thomas, published in 1887.

How do you make a martini?

There are several variations of the classic martini, and also many modern variations.

Dry martini: Ask for a dry martini and expect a drink with very little vermouth – conventionally in a 6:1 ratio or less with the gin.

Dirty martini: ‘Dirty’ will come with a little olive brine stirred into the gin and vermouth, while a Gibson is made with a silverskin onion and Plymouth gin.

Wet martini: Wet means there is a higher percentage of vermouth – typically in a 3:1 gin to vermouth ratio.

Which gin do you use to make a martini?

London dry gin is the classic gin used for a martini, but one of our favourites is Plymouth or Sipsmith London dry gin with Noilly Prat, served straight-up with a lemon twist. It’s simple and classic. Check out our favourite British gins here…


Vanilla martini

It’s easy to create your own cocktails for entertaining at home. Keep it simple with a vodka martini – this one gets an extra kick from Grand Marnier and is flavoured with vanilla.

Vanilla Martini Recipe

Gingerbread and espresso martini cocktail

This velvety smooth, gingerbread cocktail is the perfect warmer for chilly days – or as a cheeky, alcoholic alternative to pudding. Sit back and let the bartender do the work at Brighton’s award-winning Pintxo People (pintxopeople.co.uk), and Pinchito Tapas in east London (pinchito.co.uk), or mix one up in a matter of minutes at home.

Espresso Martini Recipe

Sake martini

Swap vermouth for sake in this Japanese-inspired take on the classic cocktail.

Sake Martini Cocktail Recipe

Bacon and egg martini

This cocktail recipe from LCC Shoreditch uses fat-washed (bacon-infused) Jack Daniel’s, first done in New York in the 90s for a Benton’s Old Fashioned. Mix that with maple syrup and you’ve got breakfast in a glass.

Breakfast Martini Recipe

Bitter orange and cardamom martinis

Martinis are one of our favourite mixed alcoholic drinks. We’ve added marmalade and lemon juice to this cocktail recipe for for an extra kick of flavour. Enjoy!

Vodka Martini with Bitter Orange and Cardamom

Elderflower and lemon vodka martinis

Decorate this light and airy cocktail with white elderflowers if you have an elder bush near you. This recipe serves one, but can easily be multiplied if you’ve got friends coming over.


Chocolate martini

Dark chocolate is the star of this boozy cocktail recipe, made with just three ingredients plus ice.

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Espresso martini tiramisu

Take your espresso martini one step further with our showstopping dessert idea. Easy and indulgent, if this doesn’t wow your guests, nothing will!

Espresso Martini Tiramisu Recipe