One of the few substitute martinis that won't get tutted at, here's how to make an espresso martini

The espresso martini is perfection in a glass. Bam, I said it. Simple, stimulating, and utterly delicious. Use as a delicious dessert drink or as a short, sharp pick-me-up before heading out for the evening.

The Ingredients

The Coffee

As the name suggests, an espresso martini is designed to be made with espresso coffee. Unfortunately the recipe calls for real espresso, powder just won't cut it. If you want to know how to make an espresso martini like a pro, you'll either need to invest in a machine or find a coffee bar within non-spill distance. You could also use a stove-top Moka pot or load your cafetiere up to the brim, but as we all know these aren't real espressos.

There is some difference in opinion of the correct temperature of the coffee. Some recipes instruct the reader to make the espresso the night before, so that it is properly cold, chilled if possible. Others say it should be freshly made and piping hot. This really comes down to personal preference, and I recommend trying both before settling on your preferred method, learning how to make an espresso martini is more trial and error than anything else. If using hot coffee, make sure to add it at the very end of the process, just before shaking the espresso martini, otherwise it will melt the ice and dilute it.

Whetted your appetite? Make sure you have the right glassware! Such as the Rink Drink Martini Glasses.

The Liqueur

Many recipes use a coffee liqueur as a sweetener, though this isn't mandatory. Kahlua is the most popular choice here, but our in house taste testers prefer the slightly less sweet flavour of Tia Maria in their espresso martini. This is just a recommendation of how to make an espresso martini though, so please feel free to substitute in your favourite coffee liqueur, if you use one at all!

The Sugar

A few recipes call for the addition of an extra sweetener in the form of sugar syrup added to the shaker. It does make for a richer, more well-rounded drink than the serious, neat versions lacking it, but I think we'd recommend balancing the flavour out with a higher ratio of liqueur, rather than complicating things with yet another ingredient.

The Extras

There are a million ways to tweak this recipe to make it your own, we recommend a few drops of a high quality sherry to give it a sweet, raisiny quality. Or try a dash of vanilla liqueur (not too much though or you'll find it sickly), or a combo of Baileys's and sambuca to really jazz things up. If you're serving this as a pudding a healthy dollop of double cream will make for a far richer, more filling dessert-drink.

The Garnish

Coffee beans are the most popular, obvious choice of garnish for an espresso martini, though other recipes call for lemon peel or cocoa powder. However neither of those last options provides the necessary extra caffeine hit. If you want the best of both worlds, a coffee blast with a chocolate hit, consider splashing out on chocolate coated coffee beans! This is how to make an espresso martini really stand out from the crowd.

The Recipe

Our Favourite Recipe

Per drink

  • A handful of ice
  • 25ml vodka
  • 35ml Tia Maria
  • 35ml fresh espresso
  • Chocolate coated coffee beans to finish

Chill martini glasses in the freezer for at least 20 minutes before serving.

Put the ice in a cocktail shaker - followed by the vodka, liqueur, and lastly the coffee. Taste and add a little more liqueur if you prefer it sweeter. Shake vigorously for 20 seconds.

Strain into the chilled glasses and top with the chocolate coated coffee beans, serve immediately.

And that's all folks! The easiest instructions for how to make an espresso martini that you'll find on the web (with some extra info we hope you enjoyed). Let us know how you got on and remember to always drink responsibly www.drinkaware.co.uk.

Sincerely yours, Jack Maile