How to make an Espresso Martini

How to make an Espresso Martini

Many a great evening has begun with an espresso martini. Vodka, coffee liqueur and espresso combine to devastating effect. It’s the cocktail equivalent of black tie: soignée and sophisticated, but with the classiest of kicks. James Bond in a glass.

It was created by legendary Soho bartender Dick Bradsell In the 1980s. Legend – perpetuated by Bradsell himself – is that he created a ‘Vodka Espresso’ on the spur of the moment at the behest of a famous model. (She has never been named – a bartender keeps his customers’ secrets. But this could also be because its splendid mythology rather than fact.) It underwent various permutations in Bradsell’s hands: he tweaked the recipe and re-christened it the Espresso Martini in the 1990s. It became a fixture on cocktail menus – and in the hands of the A-list and party people - and is still the best known contemporary classic cocktail.

The key to success lies in the quality of the ingredients. Our Oxford Rye Vodka is the perfect backbone, but ensure you pair it with a high-quality liqueur and espresso. Keep your ingredients as classy as this most refined of party starters. (Or, indeed, late night reveller’s pick-me-up.)


  • 50ml Oxford Rye Vodka
  • 25ml Coffee liqueur. We prefer St George's Nola Coffee Liqueur or Hundred Fifty Lbs Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur
  • 25ml Espresso made with freshly ground, good quality coffee beans
  • 10ml Sugar syrup
  • Odd number of coffee beans to garnish


  1. Select your glassware – we use a coup glass. Chill the glass by filling it with crushed ice.
  2. Add all the ingredients to a mixer and shake vigorously.
  3. Discard the ice from the coup.
  4. Double strain the cocktail straight into the chilled coup glass.
  5. Garnish with coffee beans.
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