Olive Magazine
A martini cocktail next to a shaker

18 martini recipes

Published: April 25, 2022 at 4:10 pm
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Want to know how to make a martini? Try our fun twists on the classic cocktail, from gingerbread and espresso to elderflower and lemon

Looking for martini recipes? Want to learn how to make a classic martini? Try our ideas below, then check out our gin cocktails and vodka cocktails. After, read how to elevate your cocktail skills with our best home bar hacks

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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. There are plenty of twists on this classic cocktail, as you will see below.

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.


Easy martini recipes

Espresso martini

We love espresso martinis! One of the coolest cocktails around, this punchy little number blends hot espresso and vodka for ultimate effect.

Best Espresso Martini Recipe

French martini

For a fruity finish on a classic martini, try this simple blend of raspberry liqueur, pineapple juice and vodka. Garnish with a single raspberry.

Two French martinis with a cocktail shaker in the background

Lychee martini

Fancy something different to your go-to martini? Have a go at making this light and tropical lychee cocktail from London bar Humble Chicken – it’s as silky as it is fruity and tart.

a pale pink liquid being poured into a martini glass from a copper cocktail shaker

Passion fruit martini

Add both sharpness and sweetness to your next martini with fresh passion fruit and lime juice. Vanilla vodka, if you have it, works well in this recipe.

Passionfruit Martini Cocktail Recipe

Dirty martini

This easy cocktail makes the perfect ready-made cocktail to have on-hand – keep chilled in the fridge for when you fancy a tipple.

Dirty Gin Martini Cocktail Recipe

Vesper martini

Gin, vodka and Lillet Blanc, a wine-based aperitif from France, are all you need to make this elegant vesper martini. Don't forget the twist of lemon.

Two martini glasses on a tile

Sake martini

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

A martini cocktail next to a shaker

Vanilla martinis

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 espresso martini cocktail

This velvety smooth, gingerbread cocktail is the perfect warmer for chilly days – or as a cheeky, alcoholic alternative to pudding.

Cocktail glass of gingerbread and espresso martini cocktail, with sugar around the rim

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

We've added marmalade and lemon juice to this cocktail recipe for an extra kick of flavour. Enjoy!

Vodka Martini with Bitter Orange and Cardamom

Elderflower 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.

Elderflower Martini Recipe

Chocolate martini

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

Chocolate martini in a glass with a cocktail shaker at the side

Saffron martini

Cointreau and saffron gin give an orange hue to this punchy martini recipe. This spiced cocktail recipe comes from London's Soho restaurant, Gunpowder.

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A coupe glass being filled with an orange saffron martini cocktail

Port martini

This punchy port martini is garnished with preserved lemon, which adds exceptional depth of flavour to drinks and dishes.

A wine glass filled with white port against a grey background

Very dirty martini

This twist on a dirty martini incorporates flavours of Kalamata olives with roasted Florina pepper and thyme. This recipe comes from Crouch End restaurant, Kalimera,

A woman adding a thyme garnish to an orange cocktail

Christmas cake martini

A cocktail that's bound to impress guests, check out this martini boasting all the flavours of a traditional Christmas cake in liquid form.

Christmas Cocktail Martini

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

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